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Public Safety Academy

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Garner Public Safety Academy

The Garner Public Safety Academy (GPSA) is a Wake County Public School System Career Academy at Garner Magnet High School. The GPS Career Academy will develop and guide interested students toward a career in public safety through academics, personal development and in-depth education which will prepare the students to be college and career ready.

Students complete career academy requirements during the regular school day, with the exception of work internships. Career academy students may also participate in required and elective classes outside of the career academy, as well as other activities such as clubs and sports.

Career academy students normally take a mix of two or three career academy courses each year and the rest academic or other elective courses. Career academy courses are designed to show students how their subjects relate to each other and the career field.

Career Options

Fire & Safety and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) - Occupations in this cluster

  • Career Paths with a Fire Science Degree
  • Emergency Management Careers
  • NC Department of Public Safety
  • Careers in Emergency Medical Service
  • Wake County EMS

Who Can Join?

Any rising 9th or 10th grader is eligible to join the Public Safety Academy. Rising Sophomores should have a “C” (2.0) or better. Teacher recommendations will also be considered when applying.

Students who are admitted to the career academy will begin taking an entry level career / academic cohort class to show the applications of academics in real-world situations. After investigating their career interests and completing an entry level career academy course, students agree to commit to the career academy for the remainder of their academic career. This commitment will culminate in an internship upon their senior year at a local business to see how all of their studies apply in a “real world” situation.

Career and Technical Student Organizations

Career and technical student organizations are much more than clubs. They provide opportunities for hands-on learning, and for applying career, leadership and personal skills in real-world environments. Participants build their skills by developing projects, attending events, and competing regionally and nationally.

The student organization for law, public safety, corrections and security is SkillsUSA.

Education After High School

It is fact that young people who have at least one year of post-high school education earn thousands of dollars more a year. So, if you spend even one year at a two-or four-year college, in a certificate program at a technical school, or in an apprenticeship after you graduate from high school, you will very likely earn higher wages all your life. By furthering your education, you will be better-prepared to successfully navigate the world of work.

After taking CTE classes in public safety and fire technology, students are eligible to receive certification through the NC Department of Insurance Office of State Fire Marshall which does not involve the NC Community College system.

After taking CTE classes in emergency technology, students are eligible to take EMT Basic (certification after successful completion of the course).

You could pursue any number of opportunities including:

  • On-the-job training as a fire fighter, or EMT
  • Further your college degree in fire science
  • A four-year college degree in law, corrections management, legal management, government, criminal justice, criminal psychology, public safety or national security

If you are interested in the Public Safety Academy, please contact Ms. Simons (rsimons@wcpss.net).

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