. - Toledo Public Schools high school students are getting ready to be one step closer to being first responders.
A class that started with around 70 Toledo Public Schools students is down to the final 12.
TThese seniors are nearing graduation, but, they'll be walking away with more than just a diploma after getting involved with this first-year program.
Through this Police and Fire Career Pathways program, they're getting their EMT basic certification, which get them one step closer to gaining a spot in Toledo's next police or fire class.
"It's just really trying to diversify the field, but more importantly just trying to give our kids opportunity to go right from high school in to employment," said Dr. Durant, the Superintendent of Toledo Public Schools.
Toledo City Councilwoman Dr. Cecelia Adams played an instrumental role in this partnership and is proud of the students who have made it this far.
She hopes to give them a leg up on others who apply for the next TFD
"Coming right out of high school and they have the means by which to have employment, they don't have to be looking for a minimum wage job," said Dr. Adams.
TPS, Owens Community College and the City of Toledo all came together to get diverse students on track to join the city's police and fire departments.
These students came to Owens three days a week this semester, and spent the other two making sure they're on track to graduate with other courses.
One of the students in the class is Waite High School senior Miguel Perio. He said he plans on applying for Toledo's next fire class.
For police, they cannot immediately enter training because for the academy, cadets must be 21.
Perio said he is glad he took advantage of this program.
"The amazing instructors, the people I've met, it was the best decision I could have taken for that," Perio added.
Students do admit however that this class has not been easy. But students like Perio commends TPS for giving them this opportunity.
"We were treated as not just some teenagers some adolescents in high school, we were treated as college students, we were held to a higher standard," said Perio.
The students will take a national hands on exam in two weeks, and then have to take their written exam before completing their certification.
All parties hope to continue and expand this program.