The first ever statewide community college tuition reimbursement program for volunteer firefighters in the North Country and throughout New York is accepting applications for spring semester funds through Feb. 1.
The program is geared toward recruiting and retaining volunteers. Many volunteer fire departments need more members, and the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York (FASNY) believes that tuition reimbursement can be an effective incentive for people to volunteer in their local communities.
Nearly 200 students across the Empire State applied to participate in the program for fall 2012.
Under FASNY HELP, an individual who doesn’t have a college degree, or has not taken 80 or more lifetime college credits, can have up to 100 percent of tuition reimbursed in exchange for maintaining good grades and fulfilling service requirements in one of New York’s volunteer fire companies.
There is no restriction on the type of academic course that the FASNY HELP student volunteer can pursue full-time or part-time.
FASNY HELP funds can be used for tuition costs in the fall and spring semesters. Eligible students must maintain acceptable volunteer activity and training levels while attending school and fulfill a service requirement after they complete their course of study. They must attend the closest community college or one within a 50-mile radius of their residence.
“In light of the recent natural disasters we’ve faced and the chronic need for more manpower across the state, we need dedicated volunteers now more than ever so that an optimal level of fire and emergency protection can be provided to the citizens of this state,” said George Davenport, Chairman of FASNY’s Recruitment and Retention Committee.
For more information, visit www.fireinyou.org.