Dianne Walbrecker

FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute marked its 70th anniversary in April. The institute, part of the National Emergency Training Center in Emmitsburg, proudly commemorates its long and distinguished history supporting the Nation’s emergency management community.

The Emergency Management Institute began in April 1951 as the Civil Defense Staff College. The Civil Defense staff taught civil defense courses in heavy rescue, program administration and finance, radiation monitoring and control. The early years are highlighted in training films produced by the college’s “School for Survival.” The films depicted trainees fighting incendiary bombs in enclosed spaces, working through poison gas attacks in a sealed chamber, and tunneling through crumbled brick walls. They help illustrate how much emergency management has evolved over the years.

Today, the institute focuses on providing state, local, territorial, and tribal emergency managers with professional leadership and crisis management training, designed to address a wide range of threats and hazards. On an annual basis, the institute offers several hundred instructor-led, virtual and online independent study offerings, training millions of students annually.

To celebrate its 70 years, the Emergency Management Institute will have a year-long celebration to include webinars, podcasts, panel discussions, videos, and featured speakers, providing compelling insights from those who have benefitted over the years from the institute and its predecessor institutions in Olney, Maryland and Battle Creek, Michigan.

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