Troy University is starting a Crime Emergency Response Team (CERT), and applicants are needed.

CERT is a joint volunteer venture program through the Division of Student Services and the Office of Service Learning.

The crime emergency response team is a government funded program from the Governor’s Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives.

Jonathan Cellon, coordinator for Service Learning and Civic Engagement, played a major role in the creation of CERT.

“Emergencies happen everywhere. A lot happen on college campuses, on streets, and in surrounding communities,” Cellon said.

“With CERT, students will have the correct training to respond effectively.”

Chosen CERT members will be trained in basic first aid, CPR, search & rescue, and community disaster relief.

A schedule of these trainings will be released late this month.

On December 25, 2012 a strong F1 tornado hit Brantley Trailer Park in Troy along U.S. Highway 231. Debris from damaged and destroyed mobile homes was scattered across all lanes of the neighboring highway.

Numerous homeowners were entrapped in their homes from fallen trees and debris, though no major injuries resulted from the tornado.

“Troy students wanted to help after the storm, but none were trained to respond,” said Cellon.

With CERT, Troy students will have the opportunity to assist in other storms that bring about destruction in the community.

“Tornados happen, and we need to be ready when they happen,” said Cellon.

CERT organizations on college campuses are all across the nation responding to emergencies. University of Arizona, Georgetown University, and Auburn University have stationed CERT members prepared for  just about any situation.

Allyson Anger, a theatre major from Enterprise, was excited to know that Troy will be starting CERT. “I think the idea of training students to respond to emergencies is well needed” Anger said.

“So many people today do not know how to act in a crisis. This knowledge will not only be beneficial to the students who are trained, but also to the many lives that these students will be able to affect.”

Anger stated that she would be proactive in encouraging her friends to join the organization, as it will be personally beneficial to themselves and the community.

“You never know when the training is going to come on handy.”

CERT members have and will be selected on the basis of maturity, responsibility, and commitment level.

All members must participate in the scheduled training and attend all exercises for the group.

Members must maintain a 2.00 GPA to participate.

Preference will be give to students that are classified as freshman and sophomores for the upcoming academic year.

“We chose freshman and sophomores because they will be on campus longer” Cellon said.

“We prefer CERT members to be on campus to respond easily. We are putting a good bit of money into these students, and it is better to have them here for 3 or 4 years rather than 1.”

However, juniors and seniors are still encouraged to apply.

Around 100 CERT members will be chosen. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis for now, and they can be picked up from room 115 Eldridge Hall or room 233 in the Trojan Center.

“It’s for a good cause. Why not apply?” said Anger.



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