Monday, April 9, 2012

Search and Rescue at Unity House

The Search and Rescue Club hosted a talk by Lieutenant Keven Adam at Unity House on April 2, 2012.  Lt. Adam has been with the Maine Warden Service since September 14, 1992.  He grew up in Marlboro, Massachusetts, and most importantly for us, he is an alum of Unity College, having graduated in 1988.

Eighteen club members, including president Melanie Renell, attended. The purpose of the evening's meeting was to give club members information and insight into search and rescue protocols from Lt. Adam, who serves as the state's search and rescue coordinator. Lt. Adam's  first search and rescue experience was with Tim Peabody, now an Associate Professor in the Conservation Law Enforcement program here at the college. "They didn't have this club when I was at Unity," he says, "but I wish they had!"

Unity College Search and Rescue Club members are an all-volunteer, non-profit service provided by the students, faculty, and staff of Unity College.   The rewards are intangible, but extraordinary. "It's very exciting and very uplifting," as Keven Adam says, "to find someone alive."
Remarking on the role of his college education in his professional life, Lt. Adam said "Unity taught me everything I needed to know about the Warden's test except discretion -- for that you have to go out and ride with experienced people." He feels that the diversity of environmental perspectives at Unity prepared him for his job because he sees people from all of those perspectives in his work. He advises students who want to rise to the level of lieutenant or higher in law enforcement to take writing, business, and accounting courses.  "I need those skills for writing and managing grants" he says. "College increases a person's writing, oral communication, and public speaking skills -- skills game wardens use every day."

Club members agreed that future students may be inspired to work for the Warden Service by television shows like North Woods Law, a production of the Animal Planet network. This show features our state's wardens in a variety of situations, including wildlife rescue and poaching investigations. The club, however, participates only in search and rescue operations. Professor Mick Womersley serves as club advisor, having experience as a mountain rescue specialist in addition to his PhD in policy studies. He is also the Blogmeister for the Unity College Search and Rescue Blog. The college community values the club's work.  We all feel uplifted by their courage, dedication, and professionalism.

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