A local fire department is adding future firefighters to its force and helping them go to college.

Monday, the Seymour Volunteer Fire Department awarded $4,000 scholarships to 11 firefighters. It's part of a federal grant designed to recruit and retain firefighters.

One recipient is about to graduate high school and will head to Roane State Community College in the fall. She says she'll have a chance to give back to the community through the program.

"My dad's house burned down not too long ago and I saw their work and stuff that they did and how fast they came and responded and it just inspired me I guess," said Kaitlyn Ouellette.

The scholarships are awarded to full-time students who must maintain a 2.5 GPA and train to become a member of the Seymour Volunteer Fire Department. They must also work 20 hours a week at one of the fire stations.

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