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Discover Firefighting

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Life the life of a firefighter

Join us for three outstanding firefighting programs for middle and high school students! Get hands-on experiences by performing tasks and training exercises alongside local firefighters and emergency medical technicians.

Discover Firefighting: Basic Academy

June 19–22, 2016 (9–12th graders)

Join us on the UW Oshkosh Campus, with field activities at local stations and training centers in the Fox Valley

Youth CTA Register

Register by April 19, 2016 for early registration pricing!

With housing on the UW Oshkosh campus:

  • $449 (Early registration discounted fee)
  • $499 (After April 19, 2016)  

Get an introduction in the training, tasks, sills and education needed for today's firefighting workforce. Students are set up into teams throughout the program experience. Teams consist of engine companies, battalions, ladder companies and rescue units. All activities are taught by professional firefighters, and participants will have abundant opportunities to network and connect with fire and Emergency Medical Service (EMS) professionals throughout the experience.

The program includes:

  • Basic water rescue
  • Career planning and preparation
  • Field activities, such as how to handle ladders, hoses, fire extinguishers, 
  • Self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) and personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Introduction to the fire service and emergency medical service, with 
  • Hands-on basic activities
  • Meals and networking opportunities with fire department personnel
  • Mentorship and hands-on activities provided by professional firefighters
  • Opportunities for teamwork, problem-solving and leadership development
  • Participation in a team challenge program
  • Introduction to wildland firefighting
  • Tours of local fire departments and fire-related manufacturing companies

Participants will gain knowledge about careers in fire and emergency response services; develop leadership, problem-solving and team-building skills; and become better prepared in emergency management.

Discover Firefighting: Advanced Academy 

July 17–20, 2016 (9–12th graders)

Join us on the UW Oshkosh Campus, with field activities at local stations and training centers in the Fox Valley

Youth CTA Register

Register by May 17, 2016 for early registration pricing!

With housing on the UW Oshkosh campus:

  • $449 (Early registration discounted fee)
  • $499 (After May 17, 2016) 

The Advaced Academy is open to young men and women in grades 9-12 who have participated in a previous UW Oshkosh Basic Fire Science Camp. It is also open to students who serve or have served as a fire department intern, as well as students who belong to a fire science explorer program (with adviser/chief's signature).

This academy presents students with advanced training, knowledge and challenges that firefighters face every day. 

The camp includes:

  • Advanced emergency medical service preparation
  • Advanced field activities in handling ladders, hoses and fire extinguishers, self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), personal protective equipment (PPE) and search and rescue techniques
  • Introduction to wildland firefighting
  • Meals and networking opportunities with fire department personnel
  • Modified physical agility test, including aerial ladder climbing and hose dragging
  • Simulation experiences, such as a car fire and live tower burns
  • Tactics exercises
  • Tours of local fire departments and fire-related manufacturing companies

Participants will gain knowledge about careers in fire and emergency response services; develop leadership, problem-solving and team-building skills; and become better prepared in emergency management.

Discover Firefighting: Middle School Academy

Aug. 14–17, 2016 (6th–8th graders)

Join us on the UW Oshkosh Campus, with field activities at local stations and training centers in the Fox Valley

Youth CTA Soon 

Register by June 14, 2016 for early registration pricing!

With housing on the UW Oshkosh campus:

  • $449 (Early registration discounted fee)
  • $499 (After June 14, 2016)

New this year! Middle school students are invited get started as a junior
firefighter. Throughout the week, junior firefighters will receive training
from area firefighters and EMTs. As an introduction-to-firefighting
program, students will learn not only about fires and firefighting, but
also the teamwork and culture of the firefighting profession.

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The Discover Firefighting youth programs are sponsored by: 

  • Appleton Fire Department
  • Exploring--Learning for Life Program
  • Fox Valley Technical College Public Safety Training Center
  • Grand Chute Fire Department
  • Oshkosh Fire Department
  • Wisconsin Society of Fire Service Instructors
  • Wisconsin State Fire Chief Association
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For more infomration on any of our youth programs, contact the Division of Lifelong Learning and Community Engagement at (920) 424-1129 or toll-free (800) 633-1442.