Academic achievement is one of the core principles of the Firefighter Youth Academy and one of the commitments that all youth must agree to accept upon entry into the program. We recognize education as the foundation of career and employment success. Youth are expected to adhere to this core principle by improving their school performance and behavior in the classroom. Our goal is to collaborate with educators to prepare the cadets for post-high school academic and career success.
Program staff will work with school officials, along with parents and cadets, to ensure that their academic course work is designed to prepare cadets for post high school academic and career success. Testing and academic evaluations will be used to determine academic strengths and critical areas of need. Resources will be made available to provide after school remedial tutoring and additional assistance as needed. Regular monitoring will be conducted to identify issues early so that the proper adjustments can be made.
As academic resources in many urban schools districts continue to dwindle and performance continues to suffer, it becomes more important to create opportunities for additional support. Having firefighters serve as mentors to motivate and encourage cadets to get the most out of their academic experiences is a unique approach to serving the community.
Community Service is the fundamental principle of the Firefighter Youth Academy that best characterizes the mission of today’s fire departments. Serving others promotes civic pride and responsibility by youth while directly benefiting the entire community.
Upon the recommendation and the support of the local fire department, the Academy will adopt public safety education and fire prevention projects that will allow cadets to take responsibility for their community. Cadets will be empowered to become valuable resources for their families and their neighborhoods. Building the community from within is always a worthy endeavor to support and an obligation that each cadet must embrace.
Cadets will receive critical public safety training such as basic first-aid, CPR, earthquake preparedness, and fire extinguisher operation. The National Fire Protection Administration reports a disproportionately high percentage rate of fire casualties due to absent or non-functioning smoke detectors. The victims of these fires are most often the very young and the elderly. Youth become pro-active in saving lives by working with firefighters to install early warning smoke detectors in the homes of low-income, disabled, and elderly residents.
Additionally, cadets may also participate in neighborhood restoration and clean-up programs such as “Christmas in April” and “Paint the Town.” Their uniformed presence at several of the civic events and festivals that occur throughout the year further demonstrate their availability, leadership, and desire to serve. These efforts and other community services activities demonstrate how the Firefighter Youth Academy can take youth that society has too often considered a costly liability and develop them into valuable resources and assets for the entire community.
We define self-discipline as the ability for youth to make good decisions that will be in the best interest of their healthy growth and development. Before youth are capable of exercising self-discipline, they must be informed and made aware of the critical consequences of their decisions and their actions.
The solutions for today’s at-risk youth are varied, complex, and intertwined. Changing destructive behavior is challenging without addressing several core issues that promote self-respect and healthy self-esteem. Character building activities that promote positive interactions with peers and mentors foster an environment of cooperation and teamwork.
Our goal is to provide participants with information that will enable them to make informed, knowledgeable decisions. The academy's curriculum helps address the specific topics that will improve social behavior, build self-esteem, and enhance the youth’s opportunity to maximize his or her potential. Firefighters participate in discussions and support the learning and growth process.
Goal setting, time management, and leadership training are a few of the tools that will be provided to help youth succeed. Guest speakers from the human health and services community, who have expertise in specific areas, are scheduled to facilitate discussions and activities that center around important social topics such as peer pressure, conflict resolution, morals ethics and values, media influence, STD prevention and family planning.
Young people are too often faced with having to make critical decisions, some of which can have long-lasting and life-altering consequences. Therefore, we provide life skills training to help the cadets avoid the pitfalls that prevent youth from achieving their goals and realizing their full potential.