Wildfire Training Academies

Firefighters mop up at Capitol Forest 2016

Interagency Wildland Fire Training Academies

DNR hosts interagency fire training academies to provide quality wildland fire training at no-cost to Washington's in-state interagency firefighting partners. Each academy uses local, state and federal firefighters' expertise to teach the courses. 
The focus of the academies is to provide training in coordination with cooperating firefighting agencies to increase capacity and interagency coordination. 
The academies will offer a suite of courses in essential wildland firefighting skills, from basic to advanced levels. The courses will meet the National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) standards, and upon successful completion of the class, a student will receive a certificate. To simulate the operational organization of a wildland fire response incident, the academies operate under the Incident Command System (ICS). This allows firefighters to become familiar with ICS and assists them with future deployments.
This training allows agencies responsible for responding to wildfires the opportunity to train together before fighting fire together, building trust with one another and introducing common language throughout all agencies.
The academies are a joint operation of DNR, USFS, county fire districts and tribes. Firefighters train in basic and advanced wildland firefighting skills.

Firefighter Jobs and Providing Equipment/Services
If you are not affiliated with a fire agency in Washington, and have an interest in seasonal firefighter positions, visit our Firefighter Jobs page.
If you are interested in providing professional resources (like heavy equipment, fallers and water tenders), want to establish an agreement with DNR, and need to obtain annual operator safety training, visit our Provide Equipment and Services page.

What do the academies look like for 2021?

The Academy Program is primarily focusing on virtual training for 2021 and limiting in-person training to the required field components of courses.  At this time, the academy sessions are offering courses necessary for certification as Firefighter Type 2, Firefighter Type 1 and Single Resource Boss. 
The required field component for the S-130 courses will consist of single day trainings at various locations in the state. All other content will be delivered virtually – through a combination of self-directed (online) sessions and virtual instructor-led training. At this time, there are no fire camps planned for the 2021 academy sessions.
We are assessing the feasibility of adding other 200-level courses as we move into 2021. If we are able to offer additional courses, the schedule will be updated here with new session information.

Who can participate?

If you are affiliated with Washington state's local, state, federal or tribal firefighting agencies who participate in wildland fire suppression, you are eligible to register for an academy.

2021 Course Information/Schedule

The following information lists the courses necessary for different levels of qualification, and outlines the Academy Program’s method of delivery for 2021. The self-directed (online) courses can be accessed by anyone; a full list of NWCG-approved, self-directed courses can be found in the NWCG Training Catalog
The in-person and virtual, instructor-led trainings offered below are currently limited to students affiliated with Washington state's local, state, federal or tribal firefighting agencies.
Firefighter Type 2
The Firefighter Type 2 position serves on a hand crew, engine crew, or helitack crew, performing fire suppression and fuels management duties in the most adverse climate, fuel and terrain conditions.
The courses required for Firefighter Type 2 are approved by NWCG for self-directed or blended delivery through NFA OnlineCurrent DNR employees taking the online classes through NFA Online must also have a completed academy registration (below) in order to receive DNR program and project code information.
  • S-190, Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior (self-directed) – Available through NFA Online
  • S-130, Firefighter Training (blended training) – Online component available through NFA Online; field exercise* requires in-person training
  • L-180, Human Factors in the Wildland Fire Service (self-directed) – Available through NFA Online
  • *S-130 Field Exercise (in-person training) – Course Schedule and Registration Information below
Firefighter Type 1
The Firefighter Type 1 position leads a small group (usually not more than seven members) and is responsible for their safety on wildland and prescribed fire incidents. 
  • S-131, Firefighter Type 1 (virtual, instructor-led training) – Course Schedule and Registration Information below
Single Resource Boss
The single resource boss position (Crew Boss, Engine Boss, Heavy Equipment Boss, Felling Boss, Firing Boss, and Helicopter Manager) leads a resource and is responsible for the resource’s safety on wildland and prescribed fire incidents.  
The S-290 course required for single resource boss qualifications is approved by NWCG for online delivery through MetEdCurrent DNR employees taking the online S-290 class through MetEd must also have a completed academy registration (below) in order to receive DNR program and project code information.
  • S-290, Intermediate Wildland Fire Behavior (self-directed) – Available through MetEd
  • S-230, Crew Boss (Single Resource) (virtual, instructor-led training) – Course Schedule and Registration Information below

Registration Information

Registration for the first session will open in January, and continue on a rolling basis with each session opening five weeks before the session start. 
For S-130 Field Day participation – Covid-19 protocols will be in place for participants of the in-person courses. We encourage participants to register for the field exercise in their geographic area. General area information is listed in the schedule above, and specific information will be added as sites are confirmed.
*Registration is now closed for all Spring 2021 Fire Academy sessions.
If you have specific questions about any of the academies, contact Brian Looper 360-902-1748 or brian.looper@dnr.wa.gov