New Fire Training Center unveiled at Genesee Career Institute

FLINT, Michigan — To celebrate the completion of a new Fire Training Center at Genesee Career Institute (GCI), the Genesee Intermediate School District (GISD) is hosting a ribbon-cutting and grand opening ceremony. The event takes place on Tuesday, Aug. 22 at 2:30 p.m., and includes a tour of the facility, and chats with the Genesee County Firefighters Association and fire training student graduates. The state-of-the-art facility features a standalone training center that can be used by both students and first responders going through additional training.

Executive Director of Career and Technical Education at GISD Diana Allard says this collaborative project took roughly a year to complete. In Sept. 2022, the District hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the construction phase. 

“Genesee County Fire Association initiated the conversation with us regarding starting a Fire Academy,” says Allard. “The fire truck was donated from their group and Chief Wilkinson worked with us to ensure the new Training Center has the latest equipment to ensure students are successful in starting their fire career.”

The facility was made possible by capital project funds and a county-wide vocational millage, says Allard. She says the training center will be beneficial for many community members, students, graduates, current firefighters, and residents. 

“It is important to work to meet the needs of the community,” says Allard. “We have a shortage of first responders across the state. This allows students to be trained to go right from our program to work.”

The new addition allows up to 72 high school students within the GCI Fire Training Academy to study courses within the Fire Certification and EMT Certification programs. This high school program was first launched in 2021 to address the high-demand need for firefighters. At the completion of the fire academy, students can take written and practical exams to become certified through the State of Michigan. This expedited process allows recent high school grads to enter the workforce after graduation. 

Part of the facility’s features includes a fully functional apparatus bay, refilling equipment, a uniform storage area, a training stair tower, a fire hose, and a roof set up for practicing simulations of climbing, entering, and exiting.

“We are hopeful to create a pipeline for meeting the needs of first responders in the county through this program that will benefit the community,” says Allard. “We also hope to see fire departments use the facility for their own additional training in the future.”

For more information on the Fire Training Center, visit the Genesee Intermediate School District's website.
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