Warwick, R.I. – Sept. 24, 2009: The Federal Emergency Management Agency in partnership with The Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency will launch a Web site created to help educate and energize fourth and fifth grade students to lead their families in implementing key preparedness strategies to deal with emergencies of all kinds. The program is called STEP, (Student Tools for Emergency Planning) The launch will be held at an event next week at the Community College of Rhode Island, where three students who created the site attend classes.
The new web site will be hosted on RIEMA’s web site, www.riema.ri.gov/step, The launch will take place at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 30, in Room 4090 at CCRI’s Knight Campus, 400 East Ave., Warwick. The media is invited.
Under the direction of CCRI Computer Studies Professor Sandra Sneesby, the three Computer Studies students – Cara Blaine of Providence, Brendalee Peckham-Bell of West Warwick and Manny Rebello of Johnston – each played key roles in fulfilling this summer project.
Rebello, who has been an application developer of financial software for a small computer firm in Rhode Island for 10 years, served as the main Web programmer for the project. Blaine incorporated her design skills into the STEP project and Peckham-Bell contributed her skills in design, composition and typography to create the look and feel of the Web site. The three worked closely with Michelle Collins of FEMA and Steve Kass of the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency.
The Sept. 30 kickoff event will include remarks from CCRI President Ray Di Pasquale, RIEMA Executive Director J. David Smith, presentations by FEMA representatives and an overview of the new Web site by its creators. “This magnificent contribution by CCRI, it’s faculty members and students, will be of immeasurable help in implementing one of the most successful programs we have in helping our families be aware of the need for emergency preparedness.” stated Director Smith. “Our goal is to implement the STEP program for 20,000 students in New England this school year. We estimate that at least 10,000 students, teachers, administrators, and family members will likely use the site throughout the year. It is with great pride that I can claim that Rhode Island has the highest percentage of eligible students involved in STEP in New England.”