Ontario College Certificate in Pre-Service Firefighter Education and Training
Fleming has trained students to be successful in firefighting and rescue work for over 15 years. Our program provides a quality academic experience, hands-on training in state-of-the-art facilities, taught by professional firefighting personnel.
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. During the spring and fall, students complete extensive hands-on training designed around real-world firefighting experiences and scenarios. Additional classroom theory, college course material and medical upgrading to the EMR Standard, occurs during the winter months. Students graduate fully- prepared to enter the fire service industry.
Fleming’s program provides you with over 60 days of hands-on practical training, 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, confined space awareness, technical rescue, 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 (ITLS). 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 and II, NFPA 472 HazMat and portions of the NFPA 1006 technical rescue 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 and emergency management training.
Fleming graduates are employed as firefighters in cities such as Ottawa, Toronto, Peterborough, Whitby, Brampton, Oshawa, Vaughan, Calgary, Hamilton, Vancouver, several branches of the Canadian Forces and involved in industrial fire brigades and related industries across Canada.
Why Choose Fleming
The Eastern Ontario Emergency Training Academy (EOETA), our primary training facility, is located 40km east of Peterborough in the village of Norwood. EOETA 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, live-fire environment, allowing for a proper evaluation of each student, while completing the NFPA hands-on skills practice and evaluations.
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. They will also help you to network and make connections with industry leaders.
Strong Community Partnerships
Our partnerships provide students with many unique volunteer opportunities, including the opportunity to work as a volunteer firefighter while you complete the program. Fleming is the only college to offer this work experience for students.
Partnership with North Kawartha Emergency Services (NKES) and Otonabee-South Monaghan Fire Service (OSM)
While living in the NKES or OSM community, students are employed in a volunteer firefighter role, gaining additional hands-on experience under the supervision of trained firefighters and command officers. Currently, the NKES opportunity and the OSM opportunity is open to students starting in September. Capacity for both programs is managed by the 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 Peterborough Fire Services (PFS)
Fleming's close relationship with PFS and community organizations means that students are often included in their charitable events, public education, fire prevention and volunteer opportunities. Peterborough County Fire Services also offer similar opportunities for Fleming students.
Participate in industry competitions
Our dedicated faculty members provide extra-curricular options for students to gain confidence, build additional skills and make connections with chiefs and training officers from fire services across the country. Faculty members train with students who want to compete in national and international FireFit events – often called the “toughest two minutes in sport.” Fleming teams won gold in 2016 and 2017 at the Canadian National FireFit competitions.
Program delivery and updated standards
The maximum enrolment for this program is 48 students per intake. This limited class size ensures operational safety during training exercises and provides an effective learning environment with an emphasis on maximizing hands-on training opportunities.
An updated fitness training model has been developed to better prepare students 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.
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.
Other programs that may be of interest to you include:
- Police Foundations
- Emergency Management
- Protection, Security and Investigation
- Skilled Trades programs
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. Travel to and from the Eastern Ontario Emergency Training Academy in Norwood is the responsibility of each student (carpooling is encouraged).
Health and Non Academic Requirements
Please consult the program Coordinator if there is concern regarding the physical expectations of the program.
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 physician assessment which includes a medical certificate verifying
- good physical health and capable of strenuous activity,
- a hearing examination verifying a normal unaided hearing level and
- suitable vision for classroom and fire ground activities while at Fleming College*
*While not required to complete the program, an eye examination verifying uncorrected vision of at least 20/30 is a general condition of employment in the firefighting industry.
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.
Minimum Admission Requirements
Students applying to Pre-Service Firefighter Education and Training must meet the following requirements:
- OSSD including Gr 12 C English and Gr 12 C Math
OSSD with majority of courses at College (C ) or Open (O) unless otherwise stated.
Grade 12 C courses will be accepted where Gr 11 C course requirements are listed.
Where College level courses are listed, U and M courses will be accepted.
Two Gr 11 courses will be accepted in lieu of a Gr 12 course requirement.
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.