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High school student sets out early on career path

posted Sep 26, 2014, 9:26 AM by Fran Prentice

Like most high school seniors, Brandon Cox, a student at Wells High School, is focused on life after high school and excited about what may come.   But Cox is not just studying and thinking about the coming years, he is creating a foundation for a career as a first responder by being a volunteer firefighter with the Wells Fire Department.  However, that is not all Cox is doing in his ‘spare time’.

In March of 2014, he added ‘police cadet’ to his growing resume by becoming a cadet with the Portsmouth Police Department in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.   On top of all that, he is studying to be an emergency medical technician (EMT) at Sanford Regional Technical Center.

“As a police cadet, we are exploring the law enforcement field,” continued Cox.  “It's a great experience for me to learn what the duties of a police officer are.  We do many things while we are there, both hands on and classroom learning.”  Cox added that he is with the Portsmouth PD for three and a half hours a week.   At the PD, Cox and other cadets spend time exercising studying and training.  The cadets also do volunteer work in the Portsmouth community.

Cox spends a lot of his free time from school each week at the Wells Fire Department taking in a variety of information and learning new skills.   He proudly carries a pager on his side that links him to the fire department as he is now a volunteer firefighter that can go out on any alarm call with some restrictions.

“Ever since I was around the age of four, I have looked up to firefighters,” commented Cox.  “It was always my life goal to become a firefighter and a Maine state trooper.  Finally, I'm able to become active in the fire department as a junior firefighter and a police cadet.”    

“I have gotten to do many things with the fire department,” stated Cox, who is in the Junior Firefighter Program and has been reporting to the Wells FD since August of 2013.  “Since I have been there, I have been to one fire in town.  It was a good experience and I can't wait to see where I will be at in the future with the fire service.”

“Brandon is a real asset to the department with his skills of setting up a rehab station whenever needed,” commented Administrative Assistant to the WFD Chief Debra Nolette.  According to Nolette, Cox has logged 470 hours at the WFD doing a variety of tasks including hose testing and inspection activities.  Cox has also responded with the Department to 67 incidents and attended 45 training sessions covering a variety of topics including CPR certification.

When asked, WFD Chief Dan Moore described Cox as a “great person” who is quiet, polite and cheerful.  “We sometimes call him the Ninja, he is so quiet and when you turn around he is right there and you never hear him. He brings humor and happiness to the guys around him.”                        

By the summer of 2015, Cox hopes to have not only his high school diploma in hand but his EMT Basic Certification and Fire Fighter 1 & 2 Certification.  At that time he plans to apply to work as a corrections officer at the York County Jail with an eye on studying Criminal Justice at Southern Maine Community College.   Then, at age 21, he plans to enroll at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy to train to reach his ultimate goal of joining the Maine State Police as a trooper.  During all of this time and beyond, Cox still wants to be an active volunteer firefighter for the Wells Fire Department.                              

Brandon Cox lives in Wells.  He is the son of Tabitha Bergeron, step dad Andre Bergeron and dad Michael Cox.  Some of the activities he has been involved with as a student in the Wells-Ogunquit CSD include being a member of the WHS Marching Band, a volunteer at Wells Elementary School and a sound technician for plays and musicals at WHS. 

Caption:  Brandon Cox 

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