In mid-September, Scott Forster, Director of the Bucks County Emergency Management Agency, graduated from the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) National Emergency Management Executive Academy, held at the Emergency Management Institute in Emmitsburg, MD. Forster completed four resident courses: Emergency Management—A Leadership Challenge; Integrating Science into Emergency Management Policies and Decisions; Emergency Management in the 21st Century; and Exercising Emergency Management Executive Policy and Decision-making. In addition to class time, Executive Academy students are also required to complete a significant amount of outside project work, group collaboration, and reading. Forster is one of only 80 graduates, and the first at the Pennsylvania County level, in the prestigious program.
“We can never sit back quietly and think this will never happen to us,” stated Commissioner Chairman Robert Loughery. “We must be prepared at all levels of emergency planning and I am thankful for Scott’s leadership and initiative, staying at the forefront of Emergency Management.”
The National Emergency Management Executive Academy, a subset of the Emergency Management Professional Program (EMPP) was created using comprehensive and innovative curriculum to support the advancement of strategic and policy-level executive leadership, and is a partnership between Harvard University’s National Preparedness Leadership Institute, University of Hawaii’s National Disaster Preparedness Training Center, the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security, and Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service. The Executive Academy, designed for emergency management executives in state, local, tribal, territorial and Federal government agencies, as well as non-profit voluntary organizations and the private sector, combines critical thinking, strategic planning, innovation, and conflict resolution skills which are developed throughout the course to finally be applied to real-world, complex problems.
“I am honored and excited to have received this diploma,” said Forster. “This is something I have worked diligently towards, and I am confident in my ability to lead my team in the case of a significant emergency situation.”
The EMPP curriculum is designed to be a lifetime of learning for emergency managers and includes three separate, but closely related, training programs. The National Emergency Management Basic Academy is a gateway for individuals pursuing a career in emergency management. The National Emergency Management Leaders Academy is designed for emerging leaders and mid-level managers who lead emergency management programs and want to advance their skill set. The Executive Academy is designed for senior-level executives who are responsible for making decisions that have a significant effect on prevention, protection and mitigation policy or the management of disaster response and recovery.