Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning' 1-year, 3-semester Pre-Service Firefighter Education and Training certificate is designed to equip students with the knowledge, skills, and training to pursue a career or career advancement in Firefighting. The Program, which will be taught by faculty that 'are certified fire service trainers and active firefighters, 'will combine 'basic-level theoretical Firefighting knowledge with considerable practical skills development including emergency medical procedures, fire apparatus operations, and approximately six days of live Firefighting in a burn tower.' Learners will 'also receive assistance with resumTs and mock interview sessions in preparation for the job application process.'
During the final semester, students will have the opportunity to apply, practice, and enhance what they have learned in the classroom to real-world situations via 'a work placement in an active fire station.' During the work experience placement, the student will respond 'to emergencies with the crew as an observer' and experience 'the activities in the station including the responsibilities for station and equipment maintenance, training and day-to-day life in the fire station.' The candidate will also be 'given a work assignment binder, evaluation sheet and call log sheet and is expected to participate as any active crew member would; report on time, respond to alarms and follow directions of the station officer.' A unique aspect of the Program is that, in the first semester, learners will have the opportunity 'to obtain a DZ driver' s license,' through the DZ Driver's License course 'delivered by Humber' s Transportation Training Centre.' To earn the license, students will be required to pass 'a road test at the Ministry of Transportation.' The Program's curriculum is endorsed by the Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs and the Office of the Fire Marshal (through the Endorsement Review Board) as well as the Oakville Fire Service, Richmond Hill Fire Service, and Toronto Fire Service.
Career-wise, graduates will have acquired the qualifications that will allow them to be candidates for various professional, full time or part-time employment or volunteer positions in Firefighting in Ontario and throughout Canada. Firefighters may work in a wide range of environments like airports, forests and parks, hazardous materials units, fire departments, hospitals, nuclear plants, and other industrial, rural, urban, and suburban areas. The environment in which firefighters work will often determine the exact duties they will perform, and some firefighters may develop specialization in an area of Firefighting. For example, those working in forest land tend to focus on fire prevention by, among other ways, surveying the land for fire hazards and fires and quickly organizing responses to the latter when they do occur to limit their spread and damage.
Through further training, firefighters may become fire investigators who attempt to reconstruct the origin and cause(s) of a fire. Investigators will usually collect evidence and witness accounts which they then use to produce reports about said fire; in cases where the law may become involved, investigators may be called to testify in court.
Firefighting can be a strenuous and physically and mentally demanding career. Firefighters tend to work long and varied hours, and may be called upon to respond to emergencies at anytime during a 24-hour period, including on holidays. Moreover, Firefighting is a dangerous profession with risks for death and/or injuries and/or health problems from things like flames, falling objects, hazardous materials, and imploding structures. When firefighters are not combating fires or attending to other emergency situations directly, they are often at fire stations waiting to be called to duty or performing drills, among other things, or they may be actively engaged in promoting fire prevention.
To be eligible for admission to the Program, applicants must have an 'Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) with courses from College (C), University/ College (M), University (U) pathways, or OSSD at or above the general level, or equivalent, or mature student status; Grade 12 English ENG4C or ENG4U; MAP4C or MCT4C or MGA4U or MCB4U or MDM4U, or Grade 12 Mathematics at or above the general level;' and 'Grade 11 or 12 Chemistry SCH3U or SCH4C or SCH4U.' All prospective students must also attend 'a testing session,' for which a fee will be charged, during which students will undertake a chemistry test, a 'firefighter aptitude test, including mathematics, and complete 'a writing sample.'
Applicants' whose first language is not English must demonstrate that they have a level of English Language Proficiency sufficient for college-level studies. This proof may be obtained by either completing at least 'three consecutive English courses in a Canadian secondary school with a minimum grade of 60 per cent grade in all three courses' or 'Humber English for Academic Purposes (EAP) program' or writing an English Language Proficiency test such as the Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL) Assessment, Humber English Language Proficiency (HELP), International English Language Testing (IELTS), Michigan Test of English Language Proficiency (MELAB), or Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).
oreover, all applicants must 'pass the York University Fitness Evaluation,' submit to a 'Police Record Check,' submit 'to project co-ordinator no later than one month prior to commencement of semester one,' current, valid certification in Basic Rescuer CPR and Standard First Aid, and provide 'proof of Hepatitis B vaccination' before the end of the first semester. Students who fail 'the York University Fitness Evaluation must re-test (at student's expense) and pass prior to the end of the first semester in order to proceed to semester two.'
Students should be aware that, although it will not prevent them from enrolling and completing the Program, possessing a 'minimum 20/30 uncorrected vision in both eyes with no significant colour deficiency is a normal' requirement for employment with fire departments. Candidates who do not meet 'requirement are required to sign a letter of understanding stating' that they are 'aware of fire department requirements.' Furthermore, individuals with a criminal record may find it difficult to obtain field placements and/or post-graduate employment in Firefighting; the College also 'reserves the right to deny admission or withdraw a student from a program based on an unpardoned criminal record bearing relevance to the academic or field placement requirements of the program. It is important for potential and current students to understand that failure to meet the police record check requirements may prevent them from successful admission or completion of the program.'