Aspiring Firefighters Get Opportunity Through Sponsorship With Brevard County Fire Rescue
By Space Coast Daily // January 27, 2022
funding was provided by Brevard County District 2 Commissioner Bryan Lober
Daniel Barrios, Brendan Gish, Kamden Ireland, and Jeffrey Pillard were selected in July of 2021 to receive sponsorships.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Four students are on track to become Firefighters/EMTs with Brevard County Fire Rescue thanks to a sponsorship opportunity made possible through Brevard County Fire Rescue, via funding provided by Brevard County District 2 Commissioner Bryan Lober.
Daniel Barrios, Brendan Gish, Kamden Ireland and Jeffrey Pillard were selected in July of 2021 to receive sponsorships.
To be considered for the sponsorship, applicants had to complete a 500-word essay on why they should be selected, provide three letters of recommendation, have a minimum GPA of 2.5, pass a physical agility test and complete a candidate interview with Brevard County Fire Rescue’s Senior Staff.
Barrios, Gish and Ireland recently completed the Emergency Medical Technician Program at Eastern Florida State College. The program is one semester-long and consists of three courses, which include patient interaction on ambulances and in an emergency department setting.
They are now qualified to sit for the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians certification exam. Their next step will be to enroll and complete the Fire Training Academy.
All three recipients have a strong desire to make a difference in their community. Gish, who almost lost his brother to a bad car accident said, “I wouldn’t be able to call him on his birthday, get advice from him when I need it or even spend holidays together, if it weren’t for the first responders. That life-changing experience made me appreciate how much these men and women go through and do for our communities daily and I have been infatuated with this profession ever since.”
Pillard, which had already obtained his Emergency Medical Technician certification, recently completed the Eastern Florida State College’s Fire Training Academy.
The program consists of two courses totaling 492 clock hours. The extensive hands-on training prepares students to test for the Florida Fire Fighter Certificate of Compliance.
“I want to be able to help people in need and people who need care,” said Pillard. “The sponsorship opportunity presents me with the chance to create hope within our community. With hope, we can accomplish anything.”
Following in their Father’s Footsteps
Both Barrios and Ireland are the sons of Firefighters. Daniel’s father, Danny Barrios, has been in the fire service for 26 years and is an Assistant Chief for Reedy Creek Fire Department.
“My father was always my role model. His passion for helping others sparked my interest in doing the same,” Barrios said.
“Growing up and watching my dad go to work and going to visit him at his fire station was the coolest thing ever to me. At the end of my career, I want to be able to look back with pride on the countless lives that I was able to make a difference in.”
Ireland’s father, Ken Ireland, has been in the fire service for 28 years and is a District Chief for Orlando Fire Department.
“I grew up a Firefighter kid and have been around the fire service my entire life,” said Ireland. “I guess you can say it is in my blood. It amazes me how everyone in the fire service knows each other. I want to be a part of that. The fire service is huge, but the closeness of each person is awesome, much like a family.”
Brevard County Fire Rescue is currently accepting sponsorship applications. The sponsorship will provide funding to attend Eastern Florida State College’s EMT & Fire training programs. Recipients will then enter employment with BCFR as a Firefighter/EMT. The deadline to apply for this opportunity is March 23.
CLICK HERE to request the sponsorship application packet. For additional information contact the Brevard County Fire Rescue Recruiter at 321-350-9773.