Fire Science students at Savannah Technical College may expand their first responder training with EMS certifications thanks to a new Firefighter/EMS diploma now offered at the College.
“The new Firefighter/ EMSP diploma program is an exciting opportunity for our students to obtain the education and training to earn the fundamental certifications necessary to function as a firefighter and emergency medical technician in today’s fire service,” said STC Fire Science Department Head and Lead Instructor Anthony (Tony) Faust.
Upon completion of the Firefighter/Emergency Medical Services Professional diploma, students may be eligible for certification and/or licensure in the following areas: Firefighter I, EMT, and AEMT. “Because these are national certifications, our graduates can obtain gainful employment as a Firefighter/EMT anywhere. This is especially helpful for our military personnel and their spouses who are transitioning out of the service and wish to work in the emergency services field,” said Faust.
The Firefighter I Technical Certificate of Credit (TCC) program is conducted in cooperation with the Georgia Fire Academy and Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training to ensure graduates have the skills, knowledge and credentials to serve as firefighters in paid and volunteer fire departments. Graduates will be tested and certified at the National Professional Qualifications level.
EMS certification training is offered at progressive levels: EMT, AEMT, and paramedic. At the AEMT level, training requirements vary by State. The nationally defined levels, typically require 30 to 350 hours of training based on scope of practice. Students learn advanced skills such the use of advanced airway devices, intravenous fluids, and some medications.
Additionally, Savannah Technical College will offer the FF/EMSP program in a cohort format starting in Fall of 2015. The 15-week firefighter certification program involves a combination of online and hands-on sessions at various fire departments.
All Fire Science degree and diploma classes are offered at the Crossroads campus (190 Crossroads Parkway, Savannah, 31407) with class schedules offered in a convenient combination of evening and online classes. Area fire departments work closely with the College to support the program.
The Fire Science programs at Savannah Technical College prepare graduates for success in a fire and emergency service environment, along with the leadership skills to be successful in progressing through the ranks of the fire and emergency services. Most experienced firefighters continue studying to improve their job performance and prepare for promotion examinations. To progress to higher level positions, they acquire leadership skills and expertise in advanced firefighting equipment and techniques, building construction, emergency medical technology, writing, public speaking, management and budgeting procedures, and public relations.
Opportunities for promotion in fire science depend upon the results of written examinations, as well as job performance, interviews, and seniority. Hands-on tests that simulate real-world job situations also are used by some fire departments. Usually, firefighters are first promoted to engineer, then lieutenant, captain, battalion chief, assistant chief, deputy chief, and finally, chief. For promotion to positions higher than captain, many fire departments now require a bachelor’s degree, preferably in fire science, public administration, or a related field. The National Fire Academy requires a bachelor’s degree to be admitted into the Executive Fire Officer Program (EFOP).
Faust retired from the City of Savannah as a Battalion Chief after 25 years of service and is a 2010 graduate of the National Fire Academy’s EFOP. Faust rose through the ranks at Savannah Fire and was its first Public Information Officer. He received numerous accolades during his career including a commendation for rescuing flood victims in the mid-1990s. Interested students should contact Faust at firstname.lastname@example.org or 912.443.3386.