Students at Killeen high schools have another program to look forward to that could land them big bucks after graduation.
The KISD Fire Academy program was the first of its kind to be created in the state. The district recently signed another contract with the city to keep it going.
That program involves a partnership between the Killeen Fire Department and the Killeen Independent School District. They decided to start the KISD Fire program with an urge to keep people local.
Training Captain Randy Pearson said once students graduate this course they could potentially make more than some people who have a college degree.
“If they fulfill all of the requirements of the Texas Commission on Fire Protection and the Department of State Health Services are certifiable firefighter EMT’s for the state once they graduate high school,” Pearson said.
The program takes place the last two years of high school in addition to the regular curriculum requirements. Training instructor Christopher Poston said during the course, students learn the same skills required at any other adult class in the state.
“It’s a big advantage to come out of high school with not one but two different certifications,” Poston said.
Career and Technical Education Coordinator for KISD Alison Belliveau said the school district renewed the contract for the next two years with the city of Killeen, paying almost $55,000 a year for the program to exist.
“We’re using their facilities their instructors all of their equipment and so we pay that fee for the students,” Belliveau.
The program can accept a total of 30 students a year from all the high schools in the district but instructors say one of the most rewarding things about this course is the opportunities available after graduation.
The starting salary for firefighters in Killeen is around $40,000 a year.
Copyright 2017 KXXV. All rights reserved.