Graduating from the FEMA Academy was no small feat, but Emergency Management Specialist Shanda Boles did it. FEMA’s National Emergency Management Basic Academy is the entry-point for individuals pursuing careers in emergency management.
Shanda and the other 32 graduates represented emergency employees from several cities and agencies across the country. There’s an application process, pending board review, to be invited to participate in the program. After acceptance, they travel to Emmitsburg, Maryland, to study at the Emergency Management Institute (EMI). The 4-week training course is paid for by FEMA.
The 152-classroom hours covered five courses in the Basic Academy:
Shanda said, “I wanted to attend the Academy to develop my training so I’d possess the skills needed to perform my job effectively. I made connections with other EMI students from different states and we still keep in touch…which is a great resource.”
Students learn to understand the roles, responsibilities and legal boundaries associated with emergency management. It is the first of a 3-level Academy series in the Emergency Management Professional Program. She adds, “I enjoyed the beauty and history of the EMI campus. Staying in a dorm room away from my family was difficult, but the experience was worth it.”
Shanda is a native of Southern California and has worked for Plano nearly five years. She’s married to Dan (28 years) and they have three children: Cody, Zachary and Amanda (who also works for Plano in Neighborhood Services).
Photo with Mike Sharon, FEMA Management Basic Academy deputy superintendent