Nation’s First FEMA Corps Members Sworn In to Begin Disaster
Sep. 13, 2012 --
CEO Wendy Spencer addresses the inaugural class of FEMA Corps members at
the induction ceremony in Vicksburg, Miss.
-- A historic new collaboration between two federal agencies to strengthen
the nation’s disaster response capabilities was launched today as the
nation’s first 240 FEMA Corps members were sworn into service at an
induction ceremony in Vicksburg, Mississippi.
FEMA Corps is an
innovative partnership between the Federal Emergency Management Agency
(FEMA) and the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) to
enhance disaster response and recovery capacity while expanding career
opportunities for young people.
Established as a
new unit within the existing AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps
(NCCC), FEMA Corps engages young adults ages 18 to 24 to provide ten months
of full-time service on disaster response and recovery projects. Members
will be deployed to assignments ranging from working directly with disaster
survivors to supporting disaster recovery centers to sharing disaster
response and mitigation information with the public.
induction ceremony, members of the inaugural FEMA Corps class took the
AmeriCorps pledge to “get things done for America” and heard from agency
leaders about the important work that lies ahead. FEMA Deputy
Administrator Richard Serino and CNCS CEO Wendy Spencer were on hand to
welcome the members and thank them for their commitment to service.
“When I visit
communities devastated by disasters like Joplin, Mo., I always find members
of AmeriCorps lending a helping hand to survivors,” said Serino. “Today’s
inductees are taking part in an exciting new pursuit -- combining the
exceptional record of citizen service at AmeriCorps NCCC with FEMA’s
specialized mission of supporting survivors with their recovery after a
disaster. I commend and thank every member of the inaugural class of FEMA
Corps for their dedication to helping communities in need.”
“I commend you for
answering the call to serve and making a difference for people and
communities in need,” said Spencer. “As the nation’s very first FEMA
Corps members, you are helping write a new chapter in the history of
national service. With your training, backed by your team, and
inspired by your passion, you will bring much-needed hope and assistance to
disasters survivors. As you help others, this year will help you – giving
you skills, expanding your opportunities, and setting you on a lifelong
path of service to others.”
ceremony marked the end of one month of AmeriCorps NCCC training and the
start of FEMA position-specific training. After completing training this
month, members will be deployed to their first assignments. FEMA Corps will
supplement FEMA’s existing Reservist workforce in assisting citizens and
communities who have been impacted by disasters.
1,700 hours of service, FEMA Corps members will receive a $5,550 Segal
AmeriCorps Education Award to pay for tuition or pay student loans.
Members will gain significant training and experience in disaster
services that can serve as a pathway to employment in the emergency
FEMA Corps members
will be based out of five AmeriCorps NCCC campuses across the country:
Sacramento, Calif; Denver, Colo; Vinton, Iowa; Perry Point, Md; and,
Vicksburg, Miss. The program will engage 1,600 members annually when
fully operational next year.
To learn more
about FEMA Corps or to apply (individuals aged 18-24), visit AmeriCorps' or FEMA's websites.
Photos from the
induction ceremony can be found here.
FEMA’s mission is
to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we
work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for,
protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.
for National and Community Service is a federal agency that engages more
than five million Americans in service through its Senior Corps,
AmeriCorps, Social Innovation Fund, and other programs, and leads President
Obama's national call to service initiative, United We Serve. For more
information, visit NationalService.gov.