Julia Rietbroek, a recent John L. Miller–Great Neck North High School graduate, was honored at a special ceremony where she was named a recipient of the 2015–16 Firemen’s Association of the State of New York (FASNY) Gerard J. Buckenmeyer Volunteer Scholarship by the FASNY Scholarship Awards Committee Chairman Brian F. McQueen.
At her ceremony at Alert Engine Hook & Ladder & Hose Co #1 in Great Neck, Rietbroek received a certificate as well as a check for $1,500 for her volunteer service in the community from FASNY Second Vice President Steven E. Klein and Director Robert H. Ottaviano.
Rietbroek will attend Adelphi University this fall, where she will major in business/marketing. She is currently a junior member of the Great Neck Alert Fire Company, as is her father.
“I joined the Alert Juniors when I was 13 because my friend was in the program and told me all about the amazing activities the juniors did, such as competing in musters and drills,” said Rietbroek. “After joining, I realized that the juniors do much more than that. They also partake in numerous activities that help the community, such as informing the public of fire-safety procedures and visiting the Firemen’s Home in Hudson, New York.”
Rietbroek also enjoys mentoring and helping new junior members at drills and with other activities.
“I want to say what a true honor it is to receive such an award,” said Rietbroek, who was one of 15 students chosen for this scholarship from 115 applicants.
“I am the first junior in my fire department to receive the scholarship, and my parents and peers are very supportive and proud of me,” Rietbroek continued. “I think it is a great way to encourage young people like myself to be involved in community service. I am extremely proud to be a junior firefighter, and the scholarship really symbolizes how much I’ve accomplished in these last five years as a member. The scholarship money will also help defray college tuition and supplies.”
Scholarships are awarded on the basis of an applicant’s volunteer service to his or her community through contributions, such as neighborhood-improvement activities, fire-prevention projects, the fire department, Scouting, 4-H, church, school and work with senior citizens; the proof of his or her character, including community citizenship and dependability; and completion of an essay.
Founded in 1872, the FASNY represents the interests of the approximately 100,000 volunteer firefighters and emergency medical personnel in New York state. For more information, visit www.fasny.com.