Pre-Service Firefighter Education and Training

Fleming has trained students to be successful in firefighting and rescue work for over 10 years.  Our program provides a quality academic experience, hands-on training in state-of-the-art facilities, taught by professional firefighting personnel.


Fall 2016
Program Status: Accepting Applications
Program Code: PFF
Location: Peterborough
Coordinator: James Cowan Email
Credential: Ontario College Certificate
Start Dates: September 06, 2016
Tuition and Ancillary Fees (Domestic): $5,960.62 per semester*
Tuition and Ancillary Fees (International): $10,541.35 per semester*
* Tuition and fees subject to change.
Winter 2017
Program Status: Accepting Applications
Program Code: FF
Location: Peterborough
Coordinator: James Cowan Email
Credential: Ontario College Certificate
Start Dates: January 09, 2017
Tuition and Ancillary Fees (Domestic): $5,791.12 per semester*
Tuition and Ancillary Fees (International): $10,431.85 per semester*
* Tuition and fees subject to change.

Program Highlights

Here are some of the unique features that set our program apart:

Our program has a fall and winter start date. Each intake runs for three consecutive semesters, which means you can complete the full program in just one year. The curriculum delivery is organized in such a way that students during the spring and fall experience the practical evolutions and “hands-on” training designed around real-world firefighting experiences and scenarios. This allows for additional classroom theory, college course material and medical upgrading to the EMR Standard to occur during the winter months, resulting in a fully- prepared graduate ready to enter the fire service industry.

Fleming’s program provides you with over 60 days of hands-on practical training, most of which is delivered at the Eastern Ontario Emergency Training Academy (EOETA). The Academy is a well–established, fully-equipped fire and emergency services training facility.

Course content is based on the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards and includes the following topics: fire behavior, suppression, ventilation, incident management systems, command and control, hazardous materials, forcible entry, firefighter survival, auto extrication, water rescue principles, confined space awareness, fire attack scenarios, fitness and wellness, fire prevention principles, public education and medical training that includes the Red Cross Emergency Medical Response (EMR) and International Trauma Life Support courses. To further assist students, we offer fire industry-specific interviewing techniques and career planning strategies to prepare them for the application and interview process within the fire services.

Program Credentials and Career Opportunities

The Ontario Fire Marshal and Emergency Management (OFMEM) approved the training content of our program when it was launched through the Endorsement Review Board. This endorsement by the OFMEM continues today, as they are the Authority Having Jurisdiction over the training and development of firefighters in the Province of Ontario. The OFMEM has now adopted the NFPA professional qualifications as the standard for firefighting training in Ontario, meeting the International Fire Service Accreditation Council (IFSAC) and ProBoard firefighting certification standards. 

Successful completion of this program will prepare you to challenge both the written theory and practical skills evaluation portions of the NFPA standard, provided by the OFMEM.  After successfully challenging the accredited testing, you are certified as a NFPA 1001 Firefighter I & II with NFPA 472 HazMat qualifications. Municipal and industrial fire services across North America will recognize your NFPA qualifications and accept you as a qualified candidate, fully-prepared to enter the firefighting industry-- and appreciate your increased level of emergency medical training.

Fleming graduates are employed as firefighters in cities such as Ottawa, Toronto, Peterborough, Whitby, Brampton, Oshawa, Vaughan, Calgary, Hamilton, Vancouver, and involved in industrial fire brigades and related industries across Canada.

Why Choose Fleming

Knowledgeable and Experienced Instructors

Our instructors are current experienced professional firefighters, dispatchers, and fire prevention officers from fire departments across Ontario. They are all dedicated teachers who provide a unique learning environment with relevant examples from personal experience.

Strong Community Partnerships

Partnership with Peterborough Fire Services (PFS)

Fleming's close relationship with PFS means that students are often included in their charitable events, public education, fire prevention and volunteer opportunities.  This strong relationship has extended to the Peterborough County Fire Services, who are now offering similar opportunities for Fleming students.

Partnership with North Kawartha Emergency Services (NKES) and Otonabee-South Monaghan Fire Service (OSM)    

These Peterborough County Fire Services provide an additional training and work opportunity to Fleming students, which is unique in Canada. While living in the NKES or OSM community, the students are employed in a volunteer firefighter role, gaining additional experience under the supervision of trained firefighters and command officers. Currently, the NKES opportunity is only available to students in the January intake and the OSM opportunity is open to the September intake students at this time.  The limited spaces for both programs are managed by individual fire services in association with Fleming faculty. This program has been very popular and other Peterborough County Fire Services are exploring the possibility of offering similar opportunities.

Partnership with Eastern Ontario Emergency Training Academy (EOETA)

Fleming utilizes the EOETA as our primary training facility, which is located 40km east of Peterborough in the village of Norwood. EOFA has several established training environments including a burn tower, roof props, door props, search and rescue maze, confined space prop and a new high intensity propane training props. Students are fully-trained in all aspects of firefighting in a real-world environment, allowing for a proper evaluation of each student, while completing the NFPA hands-on skills practice and evaluations.

The Pre-Service Firefighter program at Fleming is kept at a maximum of 50 students. This allows for operational safety during training exercises and an effective small group teaching environment. 

An updated fitness training model has been developed to better prepare you for the firefighting recruitment process. It is based on models used by first responders, military and professional athletes and includes real-world, physical tasks encountered daily in the life of a firefighter.

Is this You?

As a firefighter, a desire to help and protect people and property from life-threatening situations is one of the keys to job satisfaction. The following skills and traits will also help in pursuing a career in firefighting:

  • Maturity
  • Common sense
  • Good physical health
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Empathy, tact and cultural sensitivities
  • Good stress management skills
  • Strong problem solving abilities
  • Capable of strenuous activity in difficult environments
  • Crisis management abilities

Career Opportunities

The forecast is for retirement rates to continue in the industry, creating a demand for properly trained and qualified men and women to fill these vacated positions. In Canada’s growing urban centers, fire departments are facing pressure to expand and hire additional resources including firefighters, trainers, and fire prevention officers and communications staff.

Municipal fire departments are not the only services looking for qualified firefighters. Large industries and companies are developing and deploying their own fire response brigades, requiring properly trained firefighting personnel.

Minimum Admission Requirements

OSSD with the majority of credits at the College (C) and Open (O) level, including:

  • 2 College (C) English courses (Grade 11 or Grade 12)
  • 2 College (C) Math courses (Grade 11 or Grade 12)   

When (C) is the minimum course level for admission, (U) or (U/C) courses are also accepted.

Health and Non Academic Requirements

Please consult the program Coordinator if there is concern regarding the physical expectations of the program.

  • Immunization Requirements: Your program has mandatory immunization requirements that include a "pre-entry" deadline date for submission. For more information, and to print a copy of the immunization form, please see the Immunization Information page
  • Current medical physician assessment which includes a medical certificate verifying:
    • good physical health and capable of strenuous activity,
    • results of an eye examination verifying uncorrected vision of at least 20/30 and
    • a hearing examination verifying a normal unaided hearing level.
  • Non Academic Requirements: Your program has mandatory requirements which may include a criminal reference check, first aid, CPR-C, etc. For more information, please see the Non Academic Requirements page

Mature Students

If you are 19 years of age or older before classes start, and you do not possess an OSSD, you can write the Canadian Adult Achievement Test to assess your eligibility for admission. Additional testing or academic upgrading may be necessary to meet specific course requirements for this program.

All applicants will be required to achieve credit in all mandatory sciences through Secondary School or through Academic Upgrading programs.

Related Programs

Other programs that may be of interest to you include: Paramedic, Police Foundations, Emergency Management, Security and Risk Management, Fire Systems Engineering Technician, or any of the Skilled Trades programs.

Additional Costs

As a Pre-Service Firefighting student you will be required to purchase your training manuals, class uniform, and full firefighting personal protective clothing suitable for structural firefighting.  While every attempt is made to minimize costs through rental programs and re-circulated equipment, additional costs could reach approximately $2000.00 for the program year. 

Every attempt is made to ensure the accuracy of the information on our website and in our publications. The College reserves the right to modify or cancel any course, program, fee, timetable, or campus location at any time.

Copyright © 2016 Sir Sandford Fleming College. All Rights Reserved.

Fleming College
599 Brealey Drive K9J 7B1 Peterborough, Ontario,
(705) 749-5530