Valley teens get hands-on police and fire training

- Teens from across the valley are taking part in a three-day fire and police academy, where they learn different aspects of both fields and get a hands-on experience.

"I knew that they weren't going to let me fall, so I don't know what there was to be nervous about," 17-year-old Katie Fujimara said.

Katie was the first girl of 27 to rappel down a building.

"Got to keep my hand by my hip and keep my feet properly far apart," she said.

She's part of the Aspire Academy, which is a three-day learning experience for women who are interested in becoming a firefighter or police officer.

"I was always really interested in this sort of field and I think it's a really good experience," she said.

"That's why we have all these women here who have had these careers for years, helping so they can see women actually doing the job and have done it for many, many years," Assistant Fire Chief Mary Cameli said.

Twenty-eight girls, including myself, got to rappel down the building.

Learning to trust yourself enough to take that first step and once you did, it was smooth sailing.

"We want girls to know that this is an option for them as they grow up and it's not just for these careers in-particular, but for other things in life too that they will be going through," Chief Cameli said. "Give them confidence to know they can do things beyond what they think they can do."

It's a lesson learned to always believe you can and you will.

For more information on the academy, click here.

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