The Department of Fire & Emergency Medical Services has scheduled its 14th Fire Academy to begin around early to mid-July.
The 14th Fire Academy will be a five to six-month program where cadets will take part in classes, physical agility tests, and hands-on training to build skills necessary to the job.
DFEMS training coordinator J.J. Concepcion said that DFEMS is right now in the process of screening 155 prospective applicants.
Concepcion said the ongoing process from applicant to fire academy cadet begins with applying for a firefighting job at the CNMI Office of Personnel Management, who will then contact DFEMS saying that they have received an application. DFEMS then calls applicants and asks them to go to its training center on Capital Hill to pick up prerequisite forms. A part of these prerequisites is obtaining English 101 certification through completing a course at the Northern Marianas College.
Once prerequisites are completed, pre-academy physical and agility tests are conducted, then followed by panel selection, and more prerequisites such as drug testing. Once a prospect passes all of this, they are a cadet in the fire academy.
Currently, there are 53 cadets so far who have passed all prerequisites and await the academy in July. All selected cadets in July will vie for 36 slots on Saipan, 10 on Rota, and six on Tinian. DFEMS prospects from Tinian and Rota will be flying over for the academy.
Concepcion said that proof of COVID-19 vaccination is a prerequisite this time.