Volunteer first responders across Indiana can now earn a tuition-free, two-year associate degree. Ivy Tech Community College has committed to providing $250,000 over two years to pay for tuition and fees for volunteer first responders to attend classes.

The Indiana Volunteer Firefighters Association and Ivy Tech Community College are partnering to provide the opportunity to degree-seeking individuals in good standing with the volunteer fire department. 

Ivy Tech says the offer does not include the Flight Aviation and General Studies programs.

The program aims to help recruit and retain volunteer firefighters to address the shortage of first responders, especially in Indiana’s rural areas. 

“It’s just the right thing to do,” said Ivy Tech Community College President, Sue Ellspermann. “We hope that piloting the scholarship program will give other potential funders the information and inspiration to continue to fund a statewide program beyond these next two years.”