On Thursday, June 10th, Avondale Fire Company's Engine 23-1 along with Chief 23's Command Vehicle traveled to Wagontown Fire Company to celebrate the graduation of our members from the Octorara Homeland Security & Protective Services Academy.
This year, 5 Avondale Fire Company members attended this program (Ulises Aguilera, Tucker Aliberti, Courtney Bisson, Alivia Tonelli, and Joey Decker), 3 of whom graduated with the Class of 2021.
Ulises is attending West Chester University majoring in Business and is graduating from Avon Grove High School on June 11th.
In addition, Ulises received a scholarship from the Chester County Fire Chief’s Association for his future goals to apply what he learns in college to the administrative side of emergency services.
Tucker is enlisting in the US Army and is graduating from Avon Grove High School on June 11th.
Courtney plans to take a gap year gaining experience working as an assistant teacher and then furthering her education through the horticulture program at Longwood Gardens. She graduates June 11th as well, from the Kennett High School.
Neighboring agency, West Grove Fire Company's Zach Felker also graduated from the O.H.P.S.A with the Class of 2021, and often is on scene of Avondale's larger scale emergency calls that require a mutual aid response.
The Octorara Homeland Security & Protective Services Program is a three year PA Department of Education approved Career Program of Study. The course prepares cadets for careers in law enforcement, corrections, pre-hospital emergency medical care, emergency management, military services, and firefighting. The program requires cadets to wear uniforms and focuses on discipline and teamwork in a para-military environment. The course is taught on site at the new Chester County Emergency Services Training Center located in Coatesville, PA. This is a challenging endeavor but cadets can earn State and National job related certifications, which are required for entry-level positions directly upon graduation. The intent is to train qualified, competent and professional emergency first responders. Students are exposed to mentors and representatives in a variety of careers related to these fields almost daily.
Through their time over the past 3 years participating in the Octorara Homeland & Protective Services Academy, students were given the opportunity to earn up to 101 emergency services and public safety certifications, including their National ProBoard Firefighter 1 & 2, as well as National Registry EMT-B and National Vehicle Rescue Awareness.
The Octorara Homeland & Protective Services Academy Graduation livestream is linked below, as well as Avon Grove High School's livestream.
Additional information about getting involved with and supporting the Octorara Homeland & Protective Services Academy is also linked below.
The membership, officers, and executive leadership of the Avondale Fire Company would like to congratulate the entire O.H.P.S.A. Class of 2021 and thank them all for their continued service to the community.