Fire Tech Program trains students to be first responders
Warrensville Heights High School offers the Tri Heights Fire Tech program serving junior and senior scholars from Warrensville, Maple Heights, Bedford Heights, Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights school districts. The Tri Heights Fire Tech program provides students 60 credit hours toward an associate’s degree, emergency medical training (EMT) and firefighter’s license plus certification – all before they cross the high school graduation stage.
High school juniors take firefighter awareness, EMT awareness, CPR and two National Incident Management System courses. While seniors complete the Fire/EMT curriculum during the first part of the school day and then travel to Cuyahoga Community College’s Western Campus for Basic Fire Academy training.
The Fire Tech program is led by City of Cleveland Fireman Antoine Crews and taught with East Cleveland Fireman Brannon Barnes.
“I’ve been a fireman for 10 years and the field is lacking minority first responders,” said Crews. “The Tri Heights Fire Tech program offers male and
female minority students a great career opportunity to enter the field right out
of high school.”
The Tri Heights Fire Tech program has an agreement with North Randall, Highland Hills and Warrensville Heights fire departments to hire Fire Tech graduates as part-time firefighters. Also upon graduation, thanks to the KeyBank Foundation, students receive a $2000 scholarship to pursue a paramedic certification.
The 2016-2017 school year was the first year of the Tri Heights program where eight students were enrolled. In the second year, 2017-2018, enrollment doubled to 16.
“[The Fire Tech program] is challenging,” said Senior Cortez Bradley. “But I’m pursuing it because it’s something I enjoy.”