Scholarships

WVIAAI Scholarships

The West Virginia Chapter has been a driving force for education in the field of arson for nearly twenty years. We are an ordinary group of individuals with an extraordinary mission.

While most people recognize our role in educating firefighters, police officers, insurance investigators, attorneys and private investigators, few people recognize the other missions of this organization.

The West Virginia Chapter currently sponsors two college scholarship programs.

The first scholarship was named in honor of John D. Janey, a Putnam County Deputy Sheriff. John was killed in the line of duty while attempting to arrest an arson suspect.

Our second scholarship effort is named in honor of Robert H. Foster, an Assistant Chief of the Wheeling Fire Department. Chief Foster was killed in the line of duty when he became trapped in a burning building.

We miss them both. Both of these men had many friends within this organization. Some of our members were assigned to investigate the fires and homicides that had taken the life of their friend.

The scholarships are our way of keeping their memory alive.

We want each of you to know that when you spend money on seminar registrations, on Chapter dues, and even buying a shirt with the IAAI logo, you are helping to support two very worthwhile goals of this organization.

We hope you take with you the memory of our friends. Please support the scholarship funds and allow us to keep their memories alive.

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West Virginia Chapter
International Association of Arson Investigators

John D. Janey Memorial Scholarship Fund

John D. Janey was a Deputy Sheriff with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Department.

On August 17, 1989 John was working a surveillance detail on a suspected arson target. At approximately 1:30 AM, a vehicle stopped in front of the residence. A suspect walked toward the house carrying two containers of gasoline. Deputy Janey called for back up and moved in for a closer look.

As the arsonist started to light the accelerant, Deputy Janey ordered him to stop and tried to effect the arrest. The suspect fled into the woods in the rear of the house. A struggle ensued between John and the suspect. During the struggle, the suspect produced a weapon and fatally wounded Deputy Janey.

Deputy Janey’s unyielding determination and valiant devotion to duty were in keeping with the finest traditions of law enforcement.

The West Virginia Chapter of the IAAI, in conjunction with Nationwide Insurance, has established a Memorial Scholarship Fund in honor of Deputy Janey. The endowment has now provided its sixteenth scholarship to a Putnam County student attending Marshall University.

The John D. Janey Scholarship Fund commemorates the ultimate sacrifice given in the line of duty be a dedicated police officer and a very good friend.

Recipients:

2014 Keree Lee Moles Poca High School
2015 Whitley Winter Poca High School
2016 Hank Allen Larch Poca High School
2017 Sarah Ranae Casey Poca High School

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West Virginia Chapter
International Association of Arson Investigators

Robert H. Foster Memorial Scholarship Fund

Contact the Chapter for More Information

Robert Howard Foster, Sr. was an Assistant Chief of the Wheeling Fire Department.

On October 29, 1991, Chief Foster was directing operations at a fully involved residential fire. While firefighters initiated an attack on the upper level of the structure, Chief Foster entered the open garage area on the lower level to investigate further. While inside the garage, the overhead door operator short circuited and the garage door closed, trapping Chief Foster in the heavy smoke.

Firefighters soon discovered that Chief Foster was trapped. However, they were unable to reach him in time to prevent the heavy smoke from taking his life.

The cause of the fire that killed Chief Foster was determined to be arson.

His courage and heroic devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the fire service and this organization.

The West Virginia Chapter of the IAAI, in conjunction with Bob’s widow, Mrs. Margaret Foster, has established a Memorial Scholarship Fund in honor of our former member. This endowment, that commemorates his dedication and commitment to his career, will provide college scholarships to children of West Virginia fire investigators.

West Virginia Chapter of the International Association of Arson Investigators Continuing Education Scholarship

The West Virginia Chapter of the International Association of Arson Investigators (WVIAAI) Continuing Education Scholarship is a program by which the WVIAAI provides financial assistance to select individuals to enhance their education in the post-secondary education including technical schools.  The scholarship will be valued at $500.00 and may be awarded annually. This scholarship was established in January 2019 by the WV Chapter of the International Association of Arson Investigators and will provide post high school financial assistance for eligible students.

Founded in 1984, the WVIAAI is dedicated to training and educating those persons who investigate arson crimes and fraud.  Since its inception, this group has offered unsurpassed training to those who seek to learn the skills necessary to combat arson.  The WVIAAI is a strong supporter of Law Enforcement and Fire Department Personnel as it is their goal to help those in need, and to offer guidance to those fighting arson in our great state.  Our organization is comprised of Law Enforcement, Fire Department Personnel, Educators, and Private and Insurance Investigators all with one goal and one purpose, "To protect the innocent from those who see to commit the crime of arson."

Successful applicants will receive a scholarship to address registration and/or lodging costs for attending the schools in the amount of $500.00. The scholarship program is not designed to address all of the costs of attendance, but rather to cover some cost, which would enable individual’s assistance in covering some expenses. 

Eligible applicants must be a current WV IAAI member or a family member, including children, step children and spouses.  Applicants must submit a completed application, along with a short narrative on why they are making application for the scholarship program.

Eligibility:

Applicant must be enrolled or enrolling in an accredited WV Baccalaureate, Community or Technical College.

Applicant must be pursuing his/her first post high school degree.  

Applicant must be a family member, including child, stepchild, or spouse of an active WV IAAI member.

Applicant must have a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 or higher on a 4.0 scale.

Scholarship applications must be received by the WV IAAI Scholarship committee by May 1st.  Scholarship applicants will be notified as to the status of their application by June 15th of that year. 

Submit completed applications via email to george.a.harms@wv.gov, or by mail to P.O. Box 1218, Scott Depot WV 25560

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The Beckley Area Foundation

The Beckley Area Foundation provides oversight for scholarship funds established by individuals, firms and organizations wishing to assist students in furthering their education. One such organization is the WV Chapter of the International Association of Arson Investigators. Established in January 2001, the Robert Foster Scholarship will provide post high school financial assistance for eligible students. Founded in 1984, the WV IAAI is dedicated to training and educating those persons who investigate arson crimes and fraud. Over the past 36 years, this group has offered unsurpassed training to those who seek to learn the skills necessary to combat arson. Also, as a strong supporter of Law Enforcement and Fire Department personnel it is their goal to help those in need, and to offer guidance to those fighting arson in our great state. Comprised of Law Enforcement, Fire Department personnel, Private Experts and Insurance personnel they form a cohesive bond with one goal and one purpose. "To protect the innocent from those who see to commit the crime of arson."

It also honors the life and memory of Wheeling Assistant Fire Chief Robert H. Foster, who died October 29, 1991, in the line of duty. Along with his 25+ years of dedication to the fire department, he was also a member of the International Association of Fire Fighters, WV Arson Investigators Association. As an Eagle Scout, he continued to serve his community through the Salvation Army and the United Methodist Men's Group.

Eligibility:

• Applicant must be a current resident of West Virginia;

• Applicant must be enrolling in an accredited WV baccalaureate, community or technical college;

• Applicant must be pursuing his/her first post high school degree;

• Applicant must be descendant of an active WV IAAI member or a deceased member who was in good standing at the time of the member’s death

• Applicant must have a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 or higher on a 4.0 scale.

To Apply -

 First, you will need to create an account. A link to the application portal appears at end of these instructions.

 Following the creation of an account you will click the Apply button which will take you to a page for application opportunities.

 On the page you will scroll down to locate the WV IAAI Robert Foster Scholarship form.

 You may click on Preview or Apply. Preview shows what the application entails. Clicking on Apply lets you begin completing the questions.

 You will need to think of someone to complete your recommendation form. Do this early in your application process as they will need to have it completed by the deadline 11:45 p.m. on March 1st.

IF you have any questions or issues please contact Beckley Area Foundation at 304-253-3806 or email Sharon@bafwv.org.

Create Your Scholarship Account