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High School Program

The High School Program (AKA Fire Science Class) is a Career and Technical Education (CTE) based class where students train to become firefighters. The program is offered to Juniors and Seniors in the Cowlitz County area. The class is located on-site at Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue Headquarters station in Kelso. Students have access to their own classroom (Station 29), a fire engine, training equipment and a three story training prop. At Station 29, students learn how to maintain and operate their station while preparing for a career in the fire service.


Click here to see cadets in action!


There are two programs offered:

Fire Science 1 - 1st year program (Recruits)

Students are taught to the Washington State Firefighter 1 level with the fundamental firefighting skills, first aid/CPR, basic Incident Command, and necessary life skills of the firefighting culture. Students are expected to demonstrate self-discipline, commitment and teamwork. Upon successful completion of the program students are recognized by the state as a volunteer firefighter. Students are then able to volunteer with Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue or local volunteer fire department.


Fire Science II - 2nd year program (Rookies)

Students that complete the 1st year class and want to further their skills are encouraged to join the second year program. Fire Science II students are expected to be active volunteers and demonstrate leadership by mentoring Recruits. Students are also able to take further advanced classes including wildland fire suppression classes. If students are 18 years old or older students are able to apply for wildland firefighting positions for the summer with Department of Natural Resources (DNR).


Class Times and Information


Classes for Fire Science I (1st year program) are offered at the following times Monday to Friday:

07:50 am till 09:30 am


Classes for Fire Science II (2nd year program) are offered at the following times Monday to Friday:

07:50 am till 09:30 am


Due to multiple school districts involved in the program, we follow the Kelso School District's schedule.

The program offers many unique opportunities for students to train for a career in fire service while earning college credits at the same time. Kelso School District along with Lower Columbia College (LCC) make it possible for students whom complete the class with a “B” grade or better to be allocated 13 college credits per year to go towards their Fire Science Associates Degree. After two years with a “B” grade or better they get 26 college credits, which is the equivalent to $4000 in education fees.

Ride along program (after the 1st school quarter) - Students are able to participate with the on-duty crew on weekends. Students are able to put their skills into practice and get familiar with the fire service.

In order for students to participate, they must be able to meet the following requirements and are responsible for purchasing the following items:

· Transportation to off campus site

· Service boots, uniform pants, belt and t-shirt

· Positive attitude and willingness to learn


If interested contact your local school counselor to sign up and get registered!

For questions, visitation of the site or additional information please contact Kirk Meller, Volunteer Coordinator, by email or by phone at 360.575.6281.

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Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue : 701 Vine St, Kelso, WA  |  360.575.6280 - tel