By Sloane M. Perron, Manager of Marketing Communications
Nick Rempp ‘23 is a Paramedic Science major from Agawam, MA, who can roll with life’s punches and works hard to achieve his dreams.
As President of Anna Maria College’s Fire and Emergency Service Association (FESA), Rempp plans activities and events that build a sense of community on campus and potential networking opportunities off campus. The students in the college club all come from different backgrounds, but they stand united in their passion for serving others as is demonstrated through their Fire Science and Paramedic Science majors.
Rempp’s journey to Anna Maria College was full of twists and turns. Rempp comes from a military family and his goal was to enlist and continue his family’s legacy of service. However, during his junior year of high school, Rempp was temporarily disqualified from enlisting and decided to explore other options to achieve his dreams.
“I changed gears at that point,” Rempp explained, “I wanted to at least have some sense of service and so I sought out fields like nursing or becoming a paramedic. I saw Anna Maria’s four-year program, which was the first I had seen, and I decided to get college experience instead of joining a program that only lasted 12 months.”
Rempp described the purpose of FESA and its impact of students’ development, “We’re dual purpose. Our primary goal is to provide hands-on training and networking opportunities to help students who actively want to join a fire department.
One of FESA’s most exciting events was a vehicle extraction demonstration on campus. FESA worked with the Paxton Fire Department and Paxton Police Department to create a fake car accident. Some FESA students pretended to be patients in the crash while other club members were the first responders who had to break windows and pry open metal doors to extract the crash victims. The hands-on training not only allowed students to experience the logistics of freeing someone from a wreck, but according to Rempp they were to feel the adrenaline of first responders and the anxiety of crash victims.
Every year FESA students are invited to attend FDIC International, a conference for firefighter instructors held in Indiana. The event is a favorite among Anna Maria students who engage with more experienced professionals, network, and learn about the latest in firefighting training and technology. Rempp achieved a personal milestone at the last Conference when he walked the 9/11 stairway. Participants walk 100 stories in gear to pay tribute to the firefighters who walked 100 stories and lost their lives to save others in the Twin Towers during 9/11.
“You’re given a badge with a name on it in the beginning, “Rempp described, “When you get to the end, you ring the three bells, which would signal end of shift or end of watch for that particular firefighter, and you say their name. It is a very moving ceremony and something I was proud to be involved with.”
FESA is open to all majors and students, not just fire science and paramedic majors. In fact, Rempp encourages other students to reach out and try new things since you never know how one opportunity can transform the rest of your life, which is something he has learned through his own life experiences.
“I never wanted to go to college until my cards got changed. The way I thought about college is if you’re going to go, at least find opportunities that move you forward all the time. So even if it’s something that you’ve never thought of doing before, try it, you’re not going to know that you don’t like it till you try it.”