MFD high school program prepares students for career

(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)
(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Some SCS students will be getting a jump start on what you might say is a pretty HOT career.

The Memphis Fire Department is launching a new program targeting high school students.

While the class starts this fall, fire officials say it'll still be two years before they could see the first graduates of this program.

It's a program that will have students graduating with the beginnings of a career. It's a chance for the Memphis Fire Department to grow their own employees, fueling students' curiosity to hopefully spark a career as a firefighter.

But before they can put on their turnouts and pull up their boots there are a few more steps needing to be done before they start responding to calls.

"They will still have to pass a physical agility test and the written exams right now to compete with everybody else, but this will potentially give them a leg up with those certifications," said Thomas Beasley, chief of training for MFD.

The two-year fire science program starts this fall at Trezevant Career and Technology Center. Shelby County Schools students will learn about how fires grow, strategies to attack the blaze, and putting out the fire.

The hope is that it creates a direct path to employment with the Memphis Fire Department.

"It's more than just than just getting out of high school going to college or going to work at a small job.   You're leaving high school with an opportunity for a career," said Beasley.

There's only one other program like it in the state, in Middle Tennessee.

"It's our opportunity to work these young people and put ourselves in a positive light with them," he said.

We are told SCS has already begun their recruiting process to fill the 15- 20 spots open in the class. MFD says they are also looking to possibly add an EMT school in the future.

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