Wildland Firefighting

Overview

About This Program

The Wildland Firefighting program consists of eight National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) courses taught by certified instructors and natural resource classes. The goal of the program is to provide graduates with the necessary training and certification to become wildland firefighters while providing a good background in natural resource skills. Graduates from this program are working for state and federal firefighting agencies like the Minnesota DNR and the US Forest Service. The demand for trained fire personnel continues to grow nationwide.

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At-a-Glance

Degrees & Credits

A.A.S. Degree (64 credits)

Diploma (32 credits)

Campus
Itasca

Program Video

Program Features

In a partnership with the Minnesota Interagency Fire Center.

This center includes the U.S. Forest Service, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service, and Bureau of Indian Affairs. The goals of the partnership are two-fold:

  • Offer high quality training and hands-on experience in wild fire and natural resource management.
  • Provide highly trained entry-level fire fighters for employment with fire organizations to meet state and national needs.
In the top 25 most popular Fire Science degree programs for women.

Fire Science Online used data from the National Center for Education Statistics to identify the most popular programs. In order to be included on the list, at least 20% of the students enrolled in fire science, forestry and similar programs had to be female.

Student in wildland firefighter training
Career Opportunities

A Growing Field

It is estimated that over the next 5 years 40-50% of the federal and state workforce will be eligible to retire. As they leave, a new generation of employees needs to be trained and ready to take over. Itasca Community College's partnership with the federal and state firefighting agencies has been very successful in placing students into internships. Many students are placed at the U.S. Forest Service in Minnesota, Colorado, California, New Mexico, Montana, Alaska, Oregon and Wyoming; several have gone on to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Faculty

Lee Kessler

Wildland Firefighting Instructor

Additional Information

Transferability

In addition to directly entering the workforce, Itasca’s Natural Resources graduates can transfer their A.A.S. degree to the University of Minnesota/Crookston, University of Minnesota/St. Paul or the University of Wisconsin/Stevens Point. For more information, stop by the Counseling Office or call 322-2320.