Joliet West students, teacher earn certification
Joliet West High School Health Occupation Students of America members Sequia Grantham, Alyna Navarrete, Sema Patel, Krystal Steg and their instructor Mary Spata (a registered nurse), participated in New Lenox’s 14th Community Emergency Response Team training class which started in September.
The CERT program educates students about disaster preparedness for hazards that may affect their immediate area and trains them in basic disaster response skills such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization and disaster medical operations. By attending CERT training classes, students learned the skills needed to help save lives and protect property.
The students met every Wednesday night for eight weeks for about two hours. Their final exercise and graduation for the class was held Oct. 22 with a large-scale tornado disaster simulation to test skills that they learned during the course.
Students assisted incident command with search and rescue teams, triaging victims and treating victims. The exercise concluded with all “victims” accounted for and then students participated in a de-briefing and luncheon.
A graduation ceremony was held recognizing the accomplishments of all the new CERT members. New Lenox Mayor Tim Baldermann spoke of the value of the program and issued all new CERT members their certificates, ID cards and CERT backpacks.