FEMA creates new 'Corps' to train emergency managers

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

WASHINGTON--The Federal Emergency Management Agency on March 13 announced the creation of a new volunteer service organization to serve as "the foundation for a new generation of emergency managers."

The new initiative is called FEMA Corps and was created in cooperation with the Corporation for National & Community Service. FEMA Corps will consist of 1,600 members, aged 18 to 24, within AmeriCorps' National Civilian Community Corps who spend a year solely devoted to disaster preparedness, response, and recovery. The first members will begin serving in August and the program will reach its full capacity within 18 months, according to the announcement.

Besides enhancing the federal government's disaster capabilities and promoting an "ethos of service," DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano also said the program will prepare young people for a career in emergency management. "Emergency management is a growing field, much larger than FEMA alone," Napolitano said in remarks at the announcement. "The recent high school and college graduates entering this program will emerge with the training and the on-the-ground experience that provides a clear pathway into this critical profession."