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home : community : education June 29, 2022

5/10/2022 9:02:00 AM
Chafin Earns Honors As Public Safety Student
Dallas man among soon-to-be Gaston College graduates
Michael Chafin
Michael Chafin

Lincoln Herald Staff

DALLAS––Michael Chafin is right where he wants to be.

The Dallas man will be among Gaston College’s May 13 graduates, according to college spokeswoman Linda Vespa. Chafin has earned an associate in applied science degree. At the recent student awards celebration ceremony, he was named the Outstanding Public Safety Student for his excellence in the school’s fire protection technology program.

And Chafin’s career has already started. He was hired as a firefighter for the City of Gastonia in 2020. He has been a volunteer with the Agriculture Center Fire Department in Bessemer City since 2019.

A North Gaston High School graduate of 2018, Chafin entered the college’s criminal justice program that autumn. After a semester, he switched to an associate-in-arts program, with the intention of transferring to a four-year university after earning his degree. However, he came to realize that his interest in public safety remained, and he wanted a career that involved physical work. He ultimately decided to switch to the fire protection technology program to pursue a career as a firefighter. Since entering that program, Chafin has become a certified firefighter and has obtained other credentials, including those involving rescue operations, apparatus driving and pump certifications. He continues to work part-time for the Agriculture Center Fire Department, which recognized him as its 2021 Firefighter of the Year, according to Josh Crisp, the director of the Gaston College Regional Emergency Services Training Center.

“During his time at Gaston College, Michael has maintained high academic standards,” said Crisp. “He is an outstanding student and will surely advance rapidly in the ranks of the fire department.”

Chafin intends to work toward a public safety administration degree from Gaston College. He still plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in the future.

Asked about his career goals, he replied, “I plan to work 30 years for the Gastonia Fire Department.”

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