Start a Fire Science Career While in High School


Taylor Gaines, Reporter

Almost every little boy dreams of being a big, strong fireman when he is a little boy. Sahuaro student, Ricky Latini, has never given up this dream. Lucky for him, he heard about the Fire Science JTED program through a JTED presentation his freshman year of high school. Now a junior, he decided to finally get active with his career. Asking why Ricky wanted to be a firefighter he said, “I would like to help and save people’s lives and plus I’m just intrigued by fire.”

This firefighting course entails Firefighting 1 and 2. In Firefighting 1, you learn ropes and knots, building construction, fire apparatus, and PPE (Personal Protection Equipment). Firefighting 2 includes learning EMS (Emergency Medical Service), wild land firefighting and hazard firefighting. The course is one school year long, but if you are 18 years old, you can choose to move on to the second year course which is EMT.

The Fire Science class meets on Mondays and Wednesdays from 3:00pm to 7:30pm at the Cutting Class campus at Camino Seco and 22nd St. They also have a class two Saturdays out of the month from 8:00am to 4:00pm at Rural Metro Training or Northwest Fire.

A normal class day consists of lectures and skill preparation, with a break for PT. During PT, Ricky and his classmates do as many rounds of pushups, sit ups, and squats. Sometimes it even includes yoga. The ritual of taking down the flag happens at 7:00pm each class day.

The Fire Science program has their students wear uniforms – a red polo shirt that says Fire Science, Dickies navy blue pants, steel-toed black boots, which must be kept shined, and a belt. During PT you wear workout shoes, a Fire Science t-shirt and basketball shorts that say… you guessed it, Fire Science.

Ricky stated, “It’s an excellent class; I’m excited to take it and I hope it works out for me.”