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Firefighting training available to local high school students

Fire truck
Posted at 5:22 PM, Jul 02, 2024

LAFAYETTE, La. — Recruiting, retaining, and training young firefighters has been a challenge for fire departments nationwide. To increase the number of trained firefighters, the Scott Fire Department (SFD) has partnered with Acadiana High School, the Lafayette Fire Department, the Louisiana Fire & Emergency Training Academy (FETA), and the State Fire Marshal's Office to provide firefighting training to local high school students.

According to Scott Fire Chief Chad P. Sonnier, the program's first year requires high school juniors to complete a Bureau of Medical Services Emergency Medical Response (EMR) and American Heart Association Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) courses based on the national EMS curriculum requirements and educational standards.

In year two, state-certified fire instructors will educate the high school seniors on the same curriculum as career firefighters going through a firefighting academy, said Sonnier. All classroom training will be held at Acadiana High School, with practical training conducted at the Lafayette Fire Department Training Center.

In addition to earning elective credits toward graduation, students will also earn the following state and International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC) certifications upon completion of the two-year course:

  • Emergency Medical Response (EMR)
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
  • Hazardous Materials Awareness Level
  • Hazardous Materials Operations Level
  • Firefighter I
  • Firefighter II

The program gives students a chance at a career in firefighting anywhere in the state, according to Sonnier. Acadiana High School Students who want to sign up can inquire with their high school counselor.