Highland High School lunch and learn series welcomes local first-responders

A Highland High School student shows gratitude to Highland Fire Department representative and 2019 Highland High School alumnus Joseph Lyons (right). (Please note: This photo was taken over two weeks ago, prior to the application of stringent social-distancing measures.)

Over the course of the 2019-2020 school year, Highland High School is hosting local leaders for a series of “Lunch and Learn with a Leader” events. The series is designed to provide real-life skills education for students on important topics.

On March 11, students gathered for a session featuring local first responders. Special guests included Lloyd Police Department Detective Anthony Ventura and representatives from the Highland Fire District and Mobile Life Support Services. Each speaker discussed various topics, including the education and experience needed for their current position, workplace morale and what a typical workday might involve. Each municipality shared training opportunities for students and ways to get involved. For example, Highland Central School District Director of Buildings and Grounds Peter Miller, who is also the Highland Fire Department Chief, educated students on the Ulster County Explorer program, which gives young men and women opportunities to explore the fire service as a career while also providing experiences that help develop interpersonal, leadership and organizational skills.


After the presentations, the representatives opened the floor to the students, encouraging them to ask questions. Students took advantage of the opportunity to ask about everything from the licenses needed to drive an ambulance to CPR training to fire-protective clothing materials.

In regard to life as a fireman, Highland Fire Department representative and 2019 Highland alumni Joseph Lyons shared, “You get out what you put in.” He hopes students will explore all of the options available in the first responder’s field.

The March event was sponsored by Sal’s Place, a local Highland business.