NEWINGTON, CT, Feb 10, 2003–ARRL is the recipient of a new grant from its corporate partner, United Technologies Corporation (UTC), to expand Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Course (ARECC) training from a state program to a national level. The grant of $150,000 over three years will reimburse course tuition to students who successfully complete emergency communication courses for ARECC Levels 1, 2, and 3.ARRL Emergency Communications Courses Manager Dan Miller, K3UFG, is responsible for the execution of the grant-funded emergency communications courses. “This grant plays perfectly into the overall plans and scope of emergency communication for local communities and our nation, as a whole,” Miller said. “This will allow us to increase the number of seats offered each month [for reimbursable courses].” He praised UTC’s foresight and proactive approach to community involvement and noted UTC’s Connecticut grant program paved the way for national implementation of the ARECC program.
ARRL Chief Development Officer Mary Hobart, K1MMH, said the Connecticut grant program–completed on December 31, 2002–was immensely successful. “Under that grant of $33,000, ARRL proposed to certify 250 radio amateurs in ARECC training from June to December 2002. The final results of that program exceeded the grant goal and certified 282 hams,” she said. “The successful completion of the UTC/CT program dramatically increased the number of certified hams in Connecticut from 12 when the program began to nearly 300 in just six months. They were thrilled with the results and clearly recognize the importance of emergency communication. With this new grant, UTC has taken a giant step andrenewed its commitment to Amateur Radio, emergency communication and Homeland Security.”
The implementation of the new national grant will be based on what the League learned from the UTC Connecticut grant and upon the first six months of the $181,900 Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) special volunteer program grant. Added together from all sources, ARRL has secured $723,000 for emergency communication training in a little more than a year, something Hobart said “will have an impact on every state in the Union.” Detailed plans for the deployment of the new UTC grant will be developed over the next couple of weeks.