Ind. community college offers free tuition for volunteer firefighters, EMS providers

The college and the state’s volunteer firefighters’ association created the scholarship to encourage volunteering


By News Staff

EVANSVILLE, Ind. — An Indiana community college system is offering free tuition to active volunteers in the fire service and EMS.

Ivy Tech Community College, which has multiple locations throughout the state, partnered with the Indiana Volunteer Firefighters Association (IVFA) to create the scholarship pilot program that begins in January, according to a press release by the association.

Ivy Tech Community College, Indiana's largest community college system. is offering scholarships for volunteer fire and EMS personnel in partnership with the Indiana Volunteer Firefighters Association. (Photo/Ivy Tech Community College)
Ivy Tech Community College, Indiana's largest community college system. is offering scholarships for volunteer fire and EMS personnel in partnership with the Indiana Volunteer Firefighters Association. (Photo/Ivy Tech Community College)

“It is to address the shortage of volunteer first responders across the state,” former IVFA President Steve Anderson said. “Nationwide the number of volunteers has been decreasing. This is going to be a huge recruitment tool but it’s also available for the retention of current members as well.”

The pilot program will last through the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 academic years and the scholarship will cover tuition and technology fees for students pursuing a two-year degree at the college, according to the Ivy Tech website.

Only active, unpaid volunteer firefighters and EMS personnel are eligible to apply, and scholarship recipients can enroll in any Ivy Tech program except for flight, aviation and general studies. The prospective students must be in good standing with their department and maintain satisfactory academic performance.

The college said it hopes the pilot program will encourage the state to provide funding to continue the scholarship for future academic years.

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