Pre-service Firefighter Education and Training
Practice ice water rescue. Work on Class A fires. Our program meets NFPA standards so you can work anywhere in Canada.

General information

Program code
1 Year (3 Semesters)
Ontario College Certificate
Academic area

Intake information

Start date Campus
Fall 2020 Barrie
Winter 2021 Barrie

Program description

In this program, students gain the knowledge and skills of basic fire science, fire suppression principles and practice, first responder emergency care, and fire prevention and public education. This program also provides students with specialty knowledge in confined space and water and ice rescue.

This three semester program meets the following National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards:

  • NFPA 1001, Standard for Firefighter Professional Qualifications: Firefighter I and Firefighter II,
  • NFPA 472, Standard for Competence of Responders to Hazardous Materials/Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents,
  • NFPA 1006, Standard on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents.

Medical Requirements

Firefighting possesses a unique set of medical requirements in order to be hired.  Although each service may have specific requirements (which you should research), generally in the Province of Ontario there are general guidelines.  We highly suggest that you ensure that you can meet these requirements before entering into the program.

For more details regarding medical requirement details please click here.

Career opportunities

Successful graduates may find employment opportunities in the following areas:

  • professional firefighting,
  • fire inspection,
  • fire prevention and public education,
  • private fire service,
  • Ministry of Natural Resources, and
  • as volunteer firefighters.

Admission information

Admission requirements

OSSD or equivalent with

  • Grade 12 English (C or U)
  • Grade 12 Mathematics (C or U)

Mature students, non-secondary school applicants (19 years or older), and home school applicants may also be considered for admission. Eligibility may be met by applicants who have taken equivalent courses, upgrading, completed their GED, and equivalency testing. For complete details refer to:

Applicants who have taken courses from a recognized and accredited post-secondary institution and/or have relevant life/learning experience may also be considered for admission; refer to the Credit Transfer Centre website for details:

Criminal Reference/Vulnerable Sector Check

Placement agencies require an up-to-date clear criminal reference check and vulnerable sector check prior to going out on placement. Students should obtain their criminal reference three months prior to placement; checks conducted earlier may not be considered current. As some jurisdictions require longer lead-time for processing, please check with the program coordinator to ensure you allow for sufficient turn-around time. It is the student's responsibility to provide the completed document prior to placement start.

NOTE: A record of criminal offences, for which a pardon has not been granted, may prevent students from completing their placements, thereby affecting their ability to graduate.

Admission details

Applicants must have an up-to-date immunization record. Also, a CPR Basic Rescue Certificate (Level C or higher) and Standard First Aid certificate must be maintained throughout the program. Students are required to submit a copy of both certificates prior to program start.

Applicants are expected to attend a group orientation session prior to the beginning of the first semester in September or January semesters.

Physical Fitness: Students must be physically fit to participate. A waiver and informed consent indicating the ability to perform the physical fitness and physical duties is required for firefighter training. During the orientation process students will be required to confirm that they are not affected by acrophobia (fear of heights) and claustrophobia (fear of confined space). If you are unsure of your health status or phobias, you should consult your doctor prior to entering the program as these may preclude you from gaining employment in firefighting. Students must successfully complete the requirements of the York Firefighter Fitness test or CPAT prior to graduation.

Special Considerations

Vision: Uncorrected Visual Acuity should be at least 6/12 (20/40) binocularly (both eyes). Corrected Visual Acuity should be at least 6/6 (20/20) binocularly. There are additional minimum requirements regarding refractive surgery farsightedness (hyperopia), colour vision, depth perception and peripheral vision. No marked degree of color blindness is permitted. Hearing requirements are normal unaided hearing at frequencies of 500 to 4000 Hz measured by audiometer.

A hiring municipality or fire department may have additional special requirements for those entering a career as a firefighter. Students wishing to pursue such careers should ensure that they will be able to meet the physical and educational requirements before enrolling. Potential students with a criminal record will need to discuss their personal situation with college counsellors before enrolling in the program.


Program-specific Courses

  • FIRE 1067 - Career Preparation 1
    (Semester 1 / 42 hours)
  • FIRE 1068 - Introduction to Fire Service
    (Semester 1 / 42 hours)
  • FIRE 1069 - Firefighter Fitness 1
    (Semester 1 / 42 hours)
  • FIRE 1070 - Fire Protection Systems and Public Education
    (Semester 1 / 42 hours)
  • FIRE 1071 - Protective Equipment and Rescue Theory
    (Semester 1 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1072 - Protective Equipment and Rescue Practical
    (Semester 1 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1073 - Ladders, Ropes and Illumination Theory
    (Semester 1 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1074 - Ladders, Ropes and Illumination Practical
    (Semester 1 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1075 - Emergency Medical Responder 1 Theory
    (Semester 1 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1076 - Emergency Medical Responder 1 Practical
    (Semester 1 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1077 - Fire Grounds Practice and Testing 1
    (Semester 1 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1078 - Firefighter Fitness 2
    (Semester 2 / 42 hours)
  • FIRE 1079 - Fire Control Theory
    (Semester 2 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1080 - Fire Control Practical
    (Semester 2 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1081 - Hazardous Materials Awareness Theory
    (Semester 2 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1082 - Hazardous Materials Awareness Practical
    (Semester 2 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1083 - Emergency Medical Responder 2 Theory
    (Semester 2 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1084 - Emergency Medical Responder 2 Practical
    (Semester 2 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1085 - Fire Hose, Water Supply and Tactical Ventilation Theory
    (Semester 2 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1086 - Fire Hose, Water Supply and Tactical Ventilation Practical
    (Semester 2 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1087 - Loss Control, Forcible Entry and Fire Cause Determination Theory
    (Semester 2 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1088 - Loss Control, Forcible Entry and Fire Cause Determination Practical
    (Semester 2 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1089 - Technical Rescue Theory
    (Semester 2 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1090 - Technical Rescue Practical
    (Semester 2 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1091 - Fire Ground Practice and Testing 2 Practical
    (Semester 2 / 42 hours)
  • FIRE 1092 - Hazardous Materials Operations Theory
    (Semester 3 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1093 - Hazardous Materials Operations Practical
    (Semester 3 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1094 - Vehicle Rescue and Extrication Theory
    (Semester 3 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1095 - Vehicle Rescue and Extrication Practical
    (Semester 3 / 14 hours)
  • FIRE 1096 - Career Preparation 2
    (Semester 3 / 42 hours)
  • FIRE 1097 - Fire Safety Inspections for Firefighters
    (Semester 3 / 28 hours)
  • FIRE 1098 - Fire Ground Practice and Testing 3
    (Semester 3 / 70 hours)

Communications courses

  • Select 1 course from the communications list during registration.
    (Semester 1)