Even though Dakoda Fenter is only 17 years old he has dedicated endless hours to volunteer work in the nearby communities where he lives.
At age 13, despite being a year too young to enter the program, Dakoda B. Fenter applied for and was accepted into the Explorer’s Post at Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office. This volunteer program facilitates teenagers and young adults age 14-21 training to become the future law enforcement officers of America. Although all who participate in this program may not move onto LAW ENFORCEMENT, this program teaches many life skills such as integrity, honor, pride, hardwork, and dedication. The Explorer’s Program is instructed by Officer’s of the Sheriff’s Department who coordinate 2-3 hour weekly meetings and events for the Explorer’s where they teach them hands on tools in Police Training.
As an Explorer it was required that the member’s of the post not only attend weekly meetings in the evenings, but also volunteer in events set up by the Sheriff’s Office in the community, one weekend every month. These volunteer events included security at local fairs and festivals such as Seafair, the Evergreen State Fair, Kla-Ha-Ya Days and the Sultan Shindig, as well as security at events such as the Methamphetamine Summit at Everett Event Center, security at Paine Field for the roll out of the 787 airliner, and finger printing young children at the local YMCA’s for identification, among many other events.
Being an S.C.S.O. Explorer was filled with opportunities to learn through real life experiences. Dakoda was able to go on ride along’s with Officer’s of the various different Police Agencies in the area, which he did on a regular basis. Most ride along’s were 12 hours in duration and involved many different types of police incidents ranging from domestic violence to motor vehicle accidents to shootings. This was real life training not something learned from a book and it was something Dakoda had a real passion for. Dakoda also had the opportunity to attend and graduate from a 6 day Police Academy in Yakima, WA. This Academy was structured military style, in the middle of December (cold below 0), it was hard and intense but he survived and came out a stronger man with a different perspective on life.
Dakoda learned life skills beyond his years in the S.C.S.O. Explorer’s Program. He participated in the Sheriff’s Office Explorer’s Program for 4 years before moving on to the Fire Department Explorer’s Program in March 2009.
Just after Dakoda turned 17 in February 2009 he decided to take on a new challenge. Although he loved his part in the Sheriff’s Office he wanted to try something different and decided that this was to become a Fire Explorer with the Snohomish Fire Department. Over the last year Dakoda has participated in the Fire Departments Explorer’s Program in Snohomish, WA. The Fire Program is much like the Sheriff’s Office Explorer’s Program. Dakoda was required to attend weekly meetings to learn about fire, first aid and other life saving skills. He also volunteered his time to help the Fire Department prepare for events in their city such as parades, the local fair and car shows. Dakoda was allowed to go on ride along’s again only this time on a Fire Truck or in a Medic Unit. Through this experience Dakoda became really interested in the Paramedic aspect of the Fire Program which opened many doors for him to explore in the area of emergency medicine and this became his new found passion.
What a great opportunity and experience it has been for Dakoda to be a part of something that is so important, that helps so many people in the community. This experience shaped him as a person and has helped lead him down the path towards success. It is awesome that there are programs like these available for our youth to participate in locally, in our own communities.
Dakoda recently resigned from the Fire Program in order to focus on his future goals. His rigorous work and school schedules demand his full attention in order to achieve his success in becoming an RN (Registered Nurse Degree). Dakoda will graduate from Glacier Peak High School in Snohomish in June 2010. In January 2010, 6 months prior to graduating high school, Dakoda will be taking college classes at Everett Community College through the Running Start Program offered at his school. Dakoda’s early entry into college will satisfy 25 required college credits, which are all prerequisites to the Nursing Program that he will start in the fall of 2011. Dakoda’s desire is to obtain his BSN (Bachelor Degree of Science in Nursing). Dakoda is looking forward to the day that he can put all of his education, skills and training into real life experiences where he can help care for and save the lives of people in his community. It is his calling.
Dakoda Fenter is a devoted individual, who has dedicated all of his teenage years to being a productive citizen in his community and serving as a great role model for children everywhere to look up to. Dakoda has touched many people’s lives through his community service and great things are yet to come for him.