High School Student
Attention young men and women:
Your future with the LAFD begins now. Interested in being an LAFD Firefighter? The following suggestions will help you prepare for a career in the fire service:
1. Graduate high school, get your GED or CHSPE Certificate.
- Having your high school diploma, GED, or CHSPE certificate is a requirement to become an LAFD Firefighter.
2. Take Fire Technology college courses.
- Taking Fire Technology courses can significantly help you in the hiring process by helping you prepare for the entry-level testing process and provides essential skills and techniques for current and future promotional opportunities. Fire Technology classes cover such areas as fire behavior, fire protection equipment and systems, building construction, wildland brush fire control techniques, structural firefighting, and the incident command structure.
- The Recruitment Unit supports the Fire Instruction Recruitment and Education (F.I.R.E.) program at four local community colleges. This is a 8-week program for high school students interested in the fire service. This program is in collaboration with the Community Colleges, LAFD, and the Los Angeles Unified School District. Additionally, cadets excelling in this program have attended a F.I.R.E. Drill Tower Academy.
3. Become an Emergency Medical Technician.
- All LAFD Firefighters are required to become Emergency Medical Technicians. Getting your EMT license is the first step towards becoming a Paramedic and is an essential part of the day-to-day activities of every Firefighter. Getting your EMT license will help you learn and apply the medical knowledge that will be helpful during your career with the LAFD. If the LAFD sends you to Paramedic School, you will receive a $7,000 education for free, and get paid to do it! You can also take CPR classes through your local American Red Cross or the American Heart Association.
4. Maintain a clean record.
- The LAFD wants to hire candidates that will best represent and uphold the honor and integrity of the LAFD, be role models to the community, and be trustworthy public servants. A felony-free criminal background, good driving record, and clean personal background are required.
5. Become involved in your community.
- The LAFD and its member are here to serve the City of Los Angeles. You can begin by volunteering in your local community. Visit www.cityofla.org/volbur, contact your church, school, or local volunteer organization and get involved!
6. Visit an LAFD Fire Station.
- Visit with Firefighters, Paramedics, and Emergency Responders to gain insight into what life as a Firefighter is really like. Ask questions, take a tour, see a fire engine up close, and learn how the Fire Department family functions on a daily basis.
7. Join the LAFD Cadet Program.
Young men and women between the ages of 14 and 20 are invited to become Fire Cadets with the Los Angeles Fire Department.
Learn first-hand how exciting a firefighting career can be by working side-by-side with actual Los Angeles Firefighters. Following an introductory training program, Fire Cadets respond to real emergencies with Firefighters and Paramedics, and assist them by performing routine, supervised tasks. Fire Cadets assist with virtually all routine tasks in the community and around the fire station, including community relations, fire prevention, equipment and station maintenance, and training.
Fire Cadets wear a uniform and are provided with helmets, turnouts, and other safety clothing. They are welcome members of the fire stations where they volunteer.
Becoming a Fire Cadet is an excellent way to develop the qualities and experience that will be helpful in nearly any field or endeavor.
Getting ready to become a Firefighter should start years before you ever submit your first job application, ideally while you're still in high school. This will give you time to prepare yourself to be a good candidate for the job, as well as to decide if firefighting is right for you.