Public Safety Academy Games held at Desert Hot Springs High School

DHS High School PSA Games

DESERT HOT SPRINGS, Calif. - UPDATE: 4:38 p.m. 

Desert Hot Springs High School (DHSHS) Senior and Public Safety Academy student Jesus Amezquita said his energy is what pulled him in, to hopefully one day pull hoses. 
"Once I get here, and once I see my fellow classmates, I get pumped," Amezquita said. "I never like to sit down. So, I thought how can I put that into being productive on a daily basis. And I thought, well, I can help people too."
Throughout Thursday morning, Amezquita and dozens of other Golden Eagles used their energy to make their rounds, and fly high on obstacle courses and real-life scenarios at the Public Safety Academy Games, where they learned first-responding first hand.
"The kids were putting on the turnouts, [and] the fire suits and doing the obstacle course upstairs," DHSHS Public Safety Academy Coordinator Wendy Lopez said. "There's also kids doing the CSI scene, where there's a van and a crime scene put in place, picking up evidence, and being able to write evidence and fingerprinting. So, I really think that's the hands-on exposure that the kids really enjoy learning about." 
First responders said hands-on training helps lay down the foundation for those wanting to go into the field, especially after seeing a rise in those wanting to serve after events like the San Bernardino attack last year.
"I've seen more people come out trying to help each other out, neighbors helping neighbors," Riverside County Emergency Service Coordinator Ralph Mesa said. "I think that's one of the things that we're trying to teach as well, especially here at DHS High School."
As those like Amezquita work to one day serve and protect. 
"It was like a wake-up call," Amezquita said. "Next time, you can be there. Hopefully there isn't a next time. But, if there is, you can be there to help anybody in need."
Lopez said 20 students will be graduating from the academy this year. 


ORIGINAL STORY: 3:33 p.m. 

December 2 is the one-year anniversary of the terror attack in San Bernardino, where many First Responders answered the call to one of the deadliest attacks on U.S. soil. A day before the anniversary, local First Responders helped show the ropes to students at Desert Hot Springs High School whom are working to be future firefighters, Emergency Medical Technicians and law enforcement officers.

Thursday's event was part of the Public Safety Academy Games, where students ran obstacle courses and played games like tug-of-war and soccer for hands on learning.

Authorities at the event told KESQ News Channel 3's Zak Dahlheimer that they've seen an increase in younger people wanting to become First Responders in the aftermath of the San Bernardino terrorist attack. 

Dahlheimer spoke to one student at Desert Hot Springs High School who's interested in becoming an arson investigator. You can see all of the action from Thursday's PSA Games on KESQ News Channel 3 at 6 p.m.


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