For Immediate Release: June 13, 2016

Students Participate in North Carolina High School Fire Fighter Challenge

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner and State Fire Marshal Wayne Goodwin welcomes students from High School Fire Fighter Academies across North Carolina to the second North Carolina High School Fire Fighter Challenge, June 13-17.

Students from six High School Fire Academies will participate in a fire fighter training course focusing on water rescue, wall breaching and interior fire attack at the Buncombe County Emergency Services Training Center. Students will be representing Iredell Career and Technical School, Catawba Valley Community College Early College Program, McDowell High School, Hibriten High School in Caldwell County, Concord High School in Cabarrus County and Piedmont High School in Union County.

"I am excited these young fire fighters have the opportunity to train at Buncombe County's state-of-the-art facility, but I am just as excited about what this means for the future of our fire and rescue services," said Goodwin. "Preparing these students for careers in fire service is a key component of my efforts to bolster fire fighter recruitment and retention across North Carolina."

The North Carolina High School Fire Fighter Academy was established in 2010 by the Office of State Fire Marshal, housed within the North Carolina Department of Insurance, to encourage students to consider careers as fire and rescue personnel. There are currently 34 High School Fire Fighter Academies in 28 counties across North Carolina.

Students enrolled in the program can achieve fire and rescue certification through the curriculum. The Fire Fighter Academy is part of the North Carolina High School Public Safety Academies, and the curriculum and certifications are free for students.

MEDIA OPPORTUNITIES: Members of the media are invited to cover training sessions taking place on Thursday, June 16. The morning session runs from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. The afternoon session runs from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Skills include wall breaching, window bails, interior fire attack and others.

Insurance Commissioner and State Fire Marshal Wayne Goodwin will address high school firefighters during the graduation ceremony. Members of the media are invited to attend Friday, June 17 at 12:00 p.m. The trainings and graduation will be held at the Buncombe County Emergency Services Training Center, 20 Canoe Lane, Woodfin.

--OSFM--