COC Fire Technology students receive scholarships

Fire Technology Program students pose with a check from Edison International.

Edison International awarded 10 College of the Canyons students who are studying fire technology with $1,000 scholarships each in an effort to help the students pay for tuition, books and other school-related fees.

The students — Anthony Caron, Christopher Denys, Jake Federico, Adam Gonzalez, Amjad Kirrish, Sean O’Connor, Christian Ramirez Guerrero, Justin Russell, Emilio Santoyo, and Mark Sayegh — had to have a cumulative GPA of 2.7 or higher, be enrolled in the college’s fire technology program, and respond to four essay questions about their fire service career goals, a news release from the college said Tuesday.

“College tuition, books and fees all add up,” said Keith Kawamoto, COC’s fire technology department chair. “Edison’s generous contribution to our students provides increased access and opportunities for success. A $1,000 scholarship goes a long way toward helping each of these fire technology students achieve their dream of earning their associate degree and a career in the fire service.”

The scholarships were awarded through a $25,000 grant from Edison International that is to be used to support the college’s development of present and future fire personnel, according to the news release. The grant was offered to COC, Santa Ana College, Victor Valley College, Crafton Hills College and Mt. San Antonio College last fall after the five community colleges were selected to pilot the program, “because of their successful fire technology programs and their service to a wide demographic of students.”

“The partnership between Edison and COC is off to a successful start,” Kawamoto said. “Edison’s generosity has allowed our fire technology department to purchase valuable hands-on training equipment, as well as award twenty $1,000 scholarships to our fire technology students.  Edison and our community will see a strong return on this investment. These students will graduate from our program with the knowledge to protect our communities, save lives and property and stay safe on the job.”
School officials added Wednesday that COC currently offers certificate and degree opportunities for both pre-service individuals and in-service professionals who seek to advance their careers, and invited interested residents to visit for more information.

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