The Fire Science Academy of Manatee Technical College graduated fire fighter class No. 26 at on Monday at MTC’s Main Campus. This class completed both Fire Fighter and Emergency Medical Technician programs.
Graduates include Riley Botts, Chase Carter, Shane Craker, Raymond Font-Troche, Dillon Garback, Jessie Jones, Dylan Strand, Jack Titsworth and Chris Zabawski.
Dillon Garback won the highest academic achievement award with a 92 percent grade average. Riley Botts earned the practical skills performance award, scoring 97 percent on an assessment of 300 skills. The physical agility award went to Christopher Zabawski for completing the Ironman challenge in three minutes seven seconds, at age 36, Zabawski out-performed his younger classmates.
Executive director of Adult, Career and Technical Education Doug Wagner made opening remarks and introduced MTC director Dr. Valerie Viands and assistant director Jeanette Eddy. Instructors Chief Bill Kebler and Chief Steve Trompke presented the awards. Fire Academy coordinator Chief Henry Sheffield presented the graduates.
The students take their state fire fighter certification exams Tuesday.
The MTC Fire Science Academy is approved by the Florida Bureau of Fire Standards and Training. Completion of the Fire Fighter program and passage of the state certification examination are statutory requirements to be employed as a Fire Fighter in Florida.
The MTC Fire Academy pass rate on the state certification exam is 94 percent.