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Best Fire Academies in Michigan | 2021

Becoming a firefighter is not easy at all. In fact, it is a very risky job because you would be combating raging fires on a daily. According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics, 7,230 firefighters were working in the state of Michigan in 2019. If you are in Michigan and you want to pursue a career that is both rewarding and fulfilling, you should consider being a firefighter. You would not only be putting out and preventing fires, but you would also be saving lives.

Here, you would learn what a fire academy is, the cost of getting one, the duration of time it would take for you to complete it and in addition, give you the best fire academies in Michigan. Let’s get started.

What is a Fire Academy?

A fire academy is an academy for students who are willing to take up firefighting as a career. Fire Academy students have to be ready to complete about 600 hours of training total, over the course of anywhere from 10 to 24 weeks. Fire Academy is comprised of academic classes, physical conditioning, EMT knowledge, and manipulative firefighting skills. 

To prepare for the fire academy, you must have to meet up with the basic requirements of the academy- the costs, getting more physically fit, waking up earlier, planning healthier meals, setting goals and expectations for yourself and meeting up with it.

Why attend a fire academy in Michigan?

In most cases, firefighters are usually the first responders in emergency situations. In going to a fire academy in Michigan, you are certain that upon graduation, you can offer-

  • Life Safety- According to Raymond Williams, life safety is one of the most important jobs of a firefighter. You study to save people’s lives and property in the incidence of a fire.
  • Incident Stabilization- As a firefighter who went to an academy in Michigan, you are entrusted with providing incident stabilization. In cases like forest fires, hazardous material releases, floods, and also terrorist attacks that might include explosions. In these situations, firefighters must find a way to confine and control these incidents.
  • Property Conservation- In addition to saving lives and stabilizing situations, you would be tasked with conservation of property. While battling blazes and performing other offensive or defensive measures, you would work efficiently to ensure that your efforts does not cause unnecessary damage to building structures and personal property, and they try to salvage as much property as possible.
  • Public Education- Firefighters also provide an important role in educating the public regarding fire and safety.

Which body accredits fire academies in Michigan?

It would hurt for you to go to a fire academy only to find out later that it is not accredited. The fire academies in Michigan are accredited by the Michigan Fire Fighters training council. Ensure that the academy you aspire to attend is accredited by this council before you start your application process.

How many fire academies are in Michigan?

There aren’t a lot of fire academies in Michigan. However, there are several other schools and colleges where you can study firefighting and even get a degree in fire science if you want.

How long is the firefighter academy in Michigan?

Generally, you would have to complete a four-week-long training in the fire academy Michigan. Summing up, it will take a minimum of 2 years to become a professional firefighter. This is considering that you continue your EMT training along with your associate’s degree, don’t volunteer, and get hired immediately.

How long does it take to become a firefighter in Michigan?

In Michigan, the amount of time it would take you to become a firefighter depends on how quickly you learn and how easily you can scale through the written exams, the agility test and ace the training as a whole. It may take you between 4weeks to 3 months to become a firefighter in Michigan.

How much is a firefighter school in Michigan?

The price of firefighter schools in Michigan varies, depending on the school, if you are going part-time or full time or if your course is online. Generally, firefighter academies cost between $200 and $1500.

How do I join the fire academy in Michigan?

  • Get the requires education- It is recommended that you get a post-secondary education before applying for fire academies in Michigan.
  • Start the application process- Before you start the application process, ensure that you do the proper research to find out the complete requirements.
  • Get through the acceptance process- This process may require you submit a lot of documents and get to the academy for your hands-on training as a firefighter.
  • Complete your training.

To successfully apply to a fire academy in Michigan, you must-

  • Be at least 18 years old at the time of filing the form for the application
  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • Have no felony convictions
  • Have good communication skills
  • Be capable of performing the duties of a firefighter
  • You must have a valid driver’s license
  • You must have at least 20/30 corrected vision, and
  • You must be able to work in all environments.

10 Best Fire Academies in Michigan

1. Fire Department Training Division Michigan

The Fire Fighter Training Division (FFTD) serves the training needs of approximately 1,029 fire departments and approximately 34,500 firefighters throughout the state by preparing and publishing advisory and training standards, as well as establishing courses of study, qualifications and regional training centres.

The Fire Fighter Training Division also serves as the liaison to work with the Michigan FireFighter’s Training Council. If you are thinking of becoming a firefighter in Michigan, the Fire Department Training Division would not only train you professionally but also offer you employment depending on how well you have performed.

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2. Grand Rapids Fire Department Training Centre

Grand Rapid Fire Academy program is accredited by the Michigan Fire Fighter’s Training Council. Once you get accepted into this academy, you would be required to go through rigorous training. This training would take approximately 3 months in the classroom and hands-on environments, designed to give you as a new firefighter, the knowledge and hands-on skills to save lives and stay safe.

Upon successful completion of the Academy, you would be awarded the Michigan Firefighter Training Council Firefighter I & II, Hazardous Material Awareness and Operations, and Licensed as a State of Michigan Basic Emergency Medical Technician. There are also certain requirements that are important for you to get accepted into the Grand Rapids Fire Department Training Centre.

You must be at least 18 years old, capable of performing the job functions, have a valid driver’s license, able to work in all environments, have at least 20/30 corrected vision or 20/100 for uncorrected, be able to move and manipulate objects, have really good communication skills and no felony convictions.

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3. Baker College of Cadillac

Baker College of Cadillac is another fully equipped college and a very good academy for firefighters. It is well equipped with complete hands-on learning facilities, on-campus housing, a fitness center, a student center, and much more. As Michigan’s largest independent college, classes are led by highly qualified instructors in classrooms and labs outfitted with the same tools and equipment professionals use on the job.

The firefighter course offered at Baker College of Cadillac is designed to help you diligently prepare for a career in a fast-growing field of firefighting. The teachers work very closely with local professionals to ensure our programs keep up with the evolving demands professionals encounter on the job.

Firefighters need to be in good shape. That’s why all recruits have to pass an agility test before getting hired. The agility test takes place shortly after the required written exam.

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4. Baker College of Jackson

With a small campus atmosphere, students of Baker College of Jackson are able to benefit from small class sizes and individual attention from instructors while learning in high-tech classrooms and labs designed to replicate real-world workplaces.

This campus features an Academic Resource Center, a cutting-edge engineering facility, and free campus-wide Wi-Fi. It is one of the best fire academies in Michigan.  

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5. Delta College

Delta College has been named the top community college in Michigan by the personal finance website WalletHub. Known for its accomplished faculty, innovative teaching, and high retention, graduation and transfer rates, Delta has established itself as a model of excellence in California at the community college level.

It is popularly known for producing the best fire Fighter’s. If you take fewer than 12 units, or if you’ve been enrolled at any college in the past, you will only receive free tuition if you meet certain income criteria.

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6. Kalamazoo Valley Community College

Kalamazoo Valley Community College is a public community college in Kalamazoo, Michigan. It was established in 1966 by the overwhelming approval of voters in nine local school districts. It enrolls about 10,000 students. Kalamazoo Valley offers certificate programs in more than 20 areas of study and associate degrees in 25 others.

Currently, Kalamazoo Valley Community College has four campuses: Texas Township, Arcadia Commons, Groves Campus, and the Bronson Healthy Living Campus. Upon successful completion of the Academy, you would be awarded the Michigan Firefighter Training Council Firefighter I & II, Hazardous Material Awareness and Operations, and Licensed as a State of Michigan Basic Emergency Medical Technician. If you are interested in pursuing firefighting as a career, this school would be a good college to consider.

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7. Kellogg Community College

KCC is a public college located in Battle Creek, Michigan in the Kalamazoo Area. It is a small institution with an enrollment of 1,006 undergraduate students. The KCC acceptance rate is 100%.

Popular majors include Liberal Arts and Humanities, Licensed Practical Nurse Training (LPN), and Nursing. Graduating 24% of students, KCC alumni go on to earn a starting salary of $25,700. Based on faculty accomplishments, salary, student reviews, and additional factors. Kellogg Community College Student Faculty Ratio is 11:1. They are ranked 9th in the list of colleges where you can start a successful firefighter career in Michigan. Visit School

8. Lake Superior Community College

Lake Superior is an above-average public college located in Duluth, Minnesota. It is a small institution with an enrollment of 1,794 undergraduate students. The Lake Superior acceptance rate is 100%. Popular majors include Liberal Arts and Humanities, Nursing Assistant, and Nursing. Graduating 40% of students, Lake Superior alumni go on to earn a starting salary of $31,700. This college offers 2 fire science degree programs.

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9. Macomb Community College

Macomb Community College is a multi-campus community college in Macomb County, Michigan. The college is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The college’s offerings include university transfer, early college, professional certification, workforce development, continuing education and enrichment.

Through its nationally acclaimed University Center, which opened in 1991, it offers bachelor’s degree completion and graduate-level programs. Growing steadily from the first 84 students that showed up for a class on September 16, 1954, at Lincoln High School in Warren, Michigan, Macomb now serves approximately 59,000 annually.

Macomb Community College offers 5 Fire Science degree programs. It’s a large, public, two-year college in a midsize city. In 2019, 14 Fire Science students graduated with students earning 13 Associate’s degrees, and 1 Certificate.

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10. Madonna University

Madonna University is a private Catholic university conducted by the Congregation of Sisters of St. Felix of Cantalice Third Order Regular of St. Francis of Assisi in Livonia, Michigan. It was founded by the Felician Sisters in 1937 and has extension campuses in Metro Detroit in southwest Detroit, Orchard Lake, and Clinton Township at the Macomb University Center.

Madonna University offers 3 Fire Science degree programs. It’s a small, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a small city. Madonna University is another good school where you can learn firefighting professionally.

It made provisions for small classes which go a long way toward facilitating one-on-one instruction, senior projects and internships which provide hands-on experience, learn the methods and mechanics of protecting, searching and controlling a fire scene, amongst other things.

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FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions).

Do I need a certification to be a firefighter in Michigan?

EMT and CRT Certification might be required.

What skills do I need to enroll in a firefighting academy in Michigan?

Decision-making skills, leadership qualities, patience, physical stamina; amongst others.

How much do fire fighters get paid in Michigan?

The annual mean salary of a firefighter in Michigan after attending a fire academy is about $54,650.

What is the job outlook for firefighters in Michigan?

The job outlook for fire fighters in Michigan after attending the fire academy is about 6%

Are there other benefits firefighters in Michigan earn?

Yes, you would get paid sick leave/ vacation, have a flexible work schedule, have a pension plan, have a continuing career and education, amongst others.

What kind of shape should I be in to become a firefighter in Michigan?

To adequately perform your duties, you must maintain good physical fitness. Most departments require you complete a fitness test to ensure this.

What is an agility test?

It is a test given to you by your academy before you pass. Candidate Physical Abilities Test (CPAT) for firefighters, which consists of challenges like stair climb, hose drag, equipment carrying, and ceiling breach.

How long is a firefighter’s shift?

Shifts are generally during the daytime and are between eight and 12 hours per day. This schedule is followed by 12- to 14-hour night shifts for three to four days. Then, firefighters have three or four consecutive days off before the cycle begins again.

Do firefighters have good benefits?

Benefits firefighters can receive include health and dental insurance coverage and disability payments should they be injured on the job. Additionally, after they complete 25 years of service, firefighters can generally qualify to receive a retirement pension.

Conclusion

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a growing need for firefighters across the nation, and Michigan is no exception. While the BLS expects the national demand to grow by 5% from 2018-2028 alongside other occupations, Projections Central reports a slightly better outlook in Michigan, with demand set to grow by 6.7% between 2016 and 2026.

Michigan features many academic programs for aspiring firefighters, including certificate programs, associate degrees, and bachelor’s degrees, many of which prepare firefighters and emergency technicians to obtain their firefighting credentials and better qualify for a wide variety of career possibilities.

These best 15 fire academies in Michigan would definitely get you started in a world where you want to pick up firefighting as a career. I hope reading this has helped you greatly.

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