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May 20, 2024 11:02 AM
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Yavapai College Fire Science Program is first in U.S. to deliver Before Operational Stress (BOS) mental health training to students

Photo: Current YC Fire Science students in class at the Career and Technical Education Center in Prescott

Yavapai College has partnered with BOS to provide world-class mental health training for students enrolled in our Fire Science program. BOS was developed by leading mental health experts and psychologists to provide practical tools for frontline workers to manage workplace stress. Studies show that the BOS program may also help to mitigate more severe outcomes of operational stress, such as Post Traumatic Stress (PTS).

“I am proud that Yavapai College is the first fire science college in the U.S. to offer this mental health training program to our students,” said Robert Borker, YC Fire Science Program Director.

“Our partnership with BOS will help prepare and train Yavapai fire academy students to proactively take control of their mental health while working to prevent workplace stress before they arrive on the job,” Borker said, adding, “BOS believes strong minds train first and we share that mentality. It is important to equip our students with the skills they need to be successful on the front lines and that includes mental health training. Firefighters face increasingly dangerous situations that affect their mental health. Before Operational Stress, (BOS) training allows fire academy a proactive approach in this discipline. This is sometimes overlooked in our industry especially for aspiring and new firefighters.”

Dr. Megan McElheran, founder of BOS, lauded the partnership with YC Fire Science, saying, “Mental health is an important aspect of training that can often get overlooked which is why we are thrilled that all students in the Fire Science program at Yavapai will be receiving BOS mental health training.”

All Yavapai Fire Science students will be required to take the BOS program as part of their fire academy course load. The BOS program is offered through an online, self-paced course that can be completed anywhere over the time of their academy.

About BOS

Before Operational Stress (BOS) is a resiliency-based program specifically designed for public safety personnel and first responders. The program was developed by leading mental health experts and psychologists to provide practical tools for frontline workers to manage operational stress.

For first responders, the battle does not stop when the workday ends and some of the toughest battles are often the invisible ones. This is why psychologist, Dr. Megan McElheran, Founder of BOS and Chief Clinician and CEO of Wayfound Mental Health Group, designed BOS with a team of experts to help address frontline workers’ specific mental health needs.

The BOS program not only equips participants with resources and skills to help people learn different ways to understand and react to stress but there has also been emerging evidence to demonstrate the program’s effectiveness in improving mental health outcomes.

The BOS program is offered online through a self-paced course. If you are interested in the BOS program for yourself or your organization, please visit the BOS website.

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