Public Health Health Education Program Development
Articles by Andrea Vastis
NFPA hires new public education leader to oversee fire and life safety education The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) appointed Andrea Vastis as senior director of Public Education. Vastis will oversee NFPA’s well-respected wildfire and home fire education programs. NFPA’s public and fire education programs The Seekonk, Massachusetts resident has held various roles in public health education, and has a long history of innovating education programs and fostering rewarding partnerships. Her ability to oversee strategic, purposeful planning, and management of interdisciplinary teams makes her a great fit for the role of leading NFPA’s public education and wildfire outreach teams. Most recently, Vastis worked for CVS Health, where she oversaw product development and promoted the role of the pharmacist in the healthcare industry. In a previous position at CVS, Vastis expanded the scope of services for the brand’s MinuteClinic within the retail health setting. Vastis also spent six years as an assistant professor and program coordinator for Community Health Education at Rhode Island College where she elevated the profile of the program and helped to transition the field of study from a concentration to its own major. Her passion for health and safety goes back to the 1990s when she worked as a senior health promotion specialist for the Rhode Island Department of Health, and as a health educator for Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island. Wildfire protection “The energy, insight and expertise that Andrea brings to the table is exactly what NFPA is seeking to further our efforts to reach the public with lifesaving information,” NFPA Vice President of Outreach and Advocacy Lorraine Carli said. “Our public education programs have been instrumental in helping reduce loss from fire for more than a century. However, as the public is more complacent about fire and overloaded with lots of messages in lots of formats, it is critical that we develop innovative strategies and collaborate with others to deliver fire safety messages that resonate with the public and gets them to take action to be safer from harm. I have great confidence in Andrea’s ability to lead NFPA’s public education division into the future.” In her new role, Vastis oversees Fire Prevention Week, the nation’s longest running public health campaign which began in 1922 In her new role, Vastis oversees Fire Prevention Week, the nation’s longest running public health campaign which began in 1922. This year’s Fire Prevention Week theme is ‘Look. Listen. Learn. Be aware. Fire can happen anywhere.’ The campaign works to educate individuals and communities about three basic but essential steps that can be taken to reduce the likelihood of having a fire – and to escape safely in the event of one. Vastis will also direct NFPA’s wildfire efforts including the organisation’s Firewise USA program, which teaches people how to adapt to living with wildfire and encourages neighbors to work together and take action to prevent losses. There are more than 1,500 recognised Firewise USA communities across the nation working proactively so that people and property are prepared and protected against the threat of wildfire. Fire and life safety education “NFPA is the go-to authority for fire and life safety educational content, tools, and resources. I am excited to work with the public education and wildfire teams, and organisations that share NFPA’s mission so that we can collectively save lives and reduce loss,” Vastis said. “My primary goal is to “engage, inform, and activate the public.” Vastis has a Bachelor of Science from Rhode Island College, a Master of Public Health in Social Behavioral Sciences from Boston University. Additionally, she is on the Board of Directors for the Boys and Girls Club of East Providence, Rhode Island.