What I did on my day off – at EMI

Yesterday we ended the first of two classes that we’re teaching here at the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Emergency Management Institute (FEMA EMI) and tomorrow we start our second class Community Emergency Response team (CERT) Program Manager.  Today, we had a day off to accommodate student housing changes.  While several students chose to stay on campus today and enjoy the down time, several others took the opportunity to be tourists and visit local places like Gettysburg, Hershey, PA and Baltimore, MD.

I took advantage of my day off by sitting in on the last day of the “Emergency Management Framework for Tribal Government” class that I mentioned in yesterday’s blog.  After three days of training, the class spent most of today working through a table-top exercise that allowed all students the opportunity to put their knowledge to the test.  And from what the course instructors said, everyone performed very well.

I really enjoyed the opportunity to observe these tribal representatives work through many emergency management issues.  As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, the practice of emergency management is still fairly new to most in Indian country.  Thanks to opportunities like this class, tribal representatives are able to come together in a supportive environment to learn and practice.

 

This class was fortunate to have Gov. Randall Vicente as a fellow student.  Gov. Vicente is the Governor of the Pueblo of Acoma in New Mexico ( www.puebloofacoma.org ).  Having tribal leaders like Gov. Vicente participating in meetings and classes like this will hopefully continue to draw attention to the importance of emergency management within tribal communities.

Another great example of how tribes can benefit from training like this is when during the exercise one of the groups realized that while several members of their tribe were at EMI, if a real emergency happened back home, their tribe might have trouble dealing with the response and recovery because they hadn’t identified secondary and tertiary backups for their essential leaders.

Well, let me end this blog with a few more pictures from around campus.

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