North Central Missouri College Nursing & Health Sciences Department now offers a two-year Fire Science degree. My name is Kristi Cutsinger, Program Coordinator of Health Sciences at NCMC. This program prepares students for employment in the field of fire protection and provides credentials to support advancement for those already employed in that area.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Employment of firefighters is projected to grow 5 percent from 2018 to 2028. Physically fit applicants with some postsecondary firefighter education and paramedic training will have the best job prospects.”
NCMC’s Fire Science program is a great opportunity for volunteer firefighters, local firefighters, or prospective firefighters to obtain their degree. This program is designed to meet the requirements of the Missouri Division of Fire Safety. In conjunction with our local Trenton Fire Department, a curriculum was developed that is Fire and Emergency Services Higher Education (FESHE) approved with International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC) approved instructors.
Students will take 43 credit hours of general education and program required courses, with classroom and online options. On top of the 43 hours, students will be responsible for completing five (5) Certifications, which will be converted into 18 credit hours (referred to as Credit for Prior Learning). They include EMT-Basic, Fire Fighter I, Fire Fighter II, Hazardous Materials Operations Level, and Hazardous Materials Awareness Level. At this time, NCMC does not teach these Certifications but can be obtained through most fire departments.
NCMC and the Trenton Fire Department have joined forces to make this program a success and to benefit future firefighters in our surrounding area. Trenton Fire Chief and adjunct instructor for NCMC, Brandon Gibler, stated, “The Fire Science degree program works great for traditional students and those already in the fire service. Most of the courses can be completed online, making it convenient for firefighters already working a shift.” Derek Hert, student, said about the program, “This program has a lot of great information for those just starting out, and for those wanting to continue their education into the fire service. I have been a firefighter for the City of Trenton for over six years, and from this program, I have learned a lot of useful information that has already helped me become a better firefighter.”
If you would like more information about the Fire Science program, or to discuss any questions you may have, you may call 660-357-6284 or email Kristi at firstname.lastname@example.org .