Okinawa students explore career paths at the Fire Station on MCAS Futenma

by Pfc. Brennan Beauton
Marine Corps Installations Pacific

MARINE CORPS AIR STATION FUTENMA, OKINAWA, Japan — The American Consulate General Naha hosted an event for Okinawa students to explore firefighting as a potential career Feb. 16 at the Fire Station on Marine Corps Air Station Futenma.

Enjoy is a program where the students of all ages are paired with an Okinawa mentor for an entire year and are given the opportunity to discover possible career fields.

Kaori Mims, the founder of the Enjoy program, said the program is designed to enrich the journey of the Okinawa youth.

“The mentor is a very inspiring role model,” said Mims. “The mentee spends a lot of time with their mentor, and he or she can learn a lot of things from the mentor.”

MCAS Futenma Fire and Rescue Marines displayed their abilities to gear up and head out in a moments notice as well as fire hose techniques to deal with fires or fuel spills.

The Marine Corps Installations Pacific Fire and Emergency Services Japan personnel allowed the students to try on their full fire fighting load out. Emergency medical technicians showed the students the equipment that is use when they respond to a call. EMT allowed students inside the ambulance to give the them hands on experience with the equipment.

Joshua Cooper, the assistant fire chief for MCIPAC Fire and Emergency Services Japan, said that this program is a great recruiting tool for anybody wants to take the first step in becoming a fire fighter.

“It gives the student the first taste and the inspiration to maybe pursue fire fighting as career,” said Cooper. “MCIPAC fire has almost 200 personnel and only eight are from the United States, and we respond to every call no matter the circumstance.”

The program aims to do more events like this in the future to continue to expose the students to all the possible career fields.

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