The camper evaluations from year to year have common themes, Schermerhorn-Collins said: “The food was amazing; the hands-on exercises are the best; the staff will help you out in any way; I made friends for a lifetime; the social events were cool.” The 2011 graduates from New York State were: Miranda Goodwin, Naples; Peyton VanAlstyne, New Baltimore; Miranda Cross, Grand Gorge; Jessica Frost, Honeoye; Breanna Kretzer, Melville; Haley Gawarcki, Lee Center; Roxanne Huchison, Barton; Susan Rose Cornell, Chaumont; Brandi Roselle, South Dayton; Jenna Thorpe, South Dayton; Stephanie Alexander, Newark Valley. The out-of-state graduates were: Samantha Kirsch, Englewood, NJ and Courtney Wilkos, Durham, NC.
FSWNYS and its Phoenix Firecamp were honored last summer by Fire 20/20 for “outstanding work to build and nourish a diverse and inclusive fire department culture and foster proactive relationships and trust with their multicultural communities.” The organization was selected from a field of 40 applicants nationwide to be one of four national recipients of the First Annual Tony Pini Award.
The 6th annual Phoenix Firecamp will be held July 15-20, 2012, at the Utica Fire Academy. The program is conducted in partnership with the City of Utica Fire Department and the Westmoreland Volunteer Fire Department. Utica supports the camp with lodging, apparatus, logistical support and EMS coverage; Westmoreland provides social events, transportation, staff support and secures contributions to Phoenix from area businesses and fire departments.
Information and applications for Phoenix 2012 will be online at www.fswnys.org after January 1, 2012; the application deadline is May 1. Phoenix Firecamp is free, except for a $75 non-refundable application fee. The camp director can be reached at 845/309-1325.