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  • 03/09/2017
  • Jolson

Hello everyone, I am an 18 year old that lives in Colorado and I have a lot of interest in firefighting. I want to someday be a full time career structural firefighter, but for now I want more than anything to be a wildland firefighter. I was wondering if anybody had any suggestions on becoming a wildland firefighter and the hiring process. Here are my qualifications:

– AIMS Comunity College fire science program (almost equivalent to firefighter 1)

-Completion of S-290 (intermediate wildland fire behavior)

– currently taking L-180, S-110, S-190, S-260, and firefighter math

Any suggestions and/or information would go a long ways, much appreciated!!

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  1. Bryce Nielsen
    March 11, 2017 Reply

    Who gave you 290 without finishing your 190? Anyway, finish all of your basic stuff. By now you’re too late to get hired for any federal positions this season. You might try and see if any state crews in your area are still hiring. Also, get on USA jobs and create a profile and resume. Create a search for job codes of 0462 and have the site email you weekly search results. They’ll hold your search for one year. That way you know when the jobs fly for fire season 2018. Also, get your EMT. Hope this helps a little bit. I’m sure others can fill in some of the gaps too.

  2. Kevin Labella
    March 16, 2017 Reply

    The first commenter gave you great advice. I would add to contact the county sheriff’s office to see if they are still filling vacancies on their Wildland Crews. also there are several contract engines on the Front Range that may still be filling vacancies. I would think your fire science instructors should have a list of points of contact. Best of luck.

  3. Yakub
    May 5, 2017 Reply

    As far as training goes to be qualified as a fire fighter type 2 (the most basic level for federal wild land fire fighters) you will need S-130 as well (and then RT-130 annually as a refresher) and if you want to work for the forest service you will also need IS-700.
    I also agree with Bryce’s comment above in regards to S-290. If you haven’t taken S-190 prior to 290, the 290 cert may not be valid. I’m not sure if IQCS (Incident Qualification and Certification System – it’s the computer system that manages certifications and qualifications) would reject out of order certifications like that or not. Either way in my experience students get a lot more out of S-290 after having at least a little on the ground experience first. If you are taking classes from a private entity make sure that they are qualified/certified to teach NWCG (National Wildfire Coordinating Group – this is the federal entity that gets all the different fed agencies on the same page) courses. I’ve had employees show up that took courses that claimed to be NWCG recognized (or at least that was what the employee believed) and were worthless from a federal perspective. It sounds like you’re taking your classes at a community college though so everything should be on the up and up.
    Good luck on the job hunt and keep one foot in the black.

  4. woodsman20
    August 4, 2017 Reply

    Not always true. I know a FBAN that never had 290 or 390.

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