Mission College will welcome its first Firefighter 1 Academy class of 30 students on Monday, August 30 at 9 a.m.
The Fire Tech program is a 16-week program daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the Santa Clara campus. Classroom instruction will also include work with the College's new FireVent Trailer (which helps students fight fires and cut holes in roofs) and its own three-story fire tower.
Mission College now offers all three legs to becoming a firefighter-- a Fire Technology degree, the one-semester EMT program, and Fire Academy. Enrollment for the Fall semester is up 16 percent from the previous year and 42 percent from Spring 2020.
Alumni Myron, Darryl, and Marty Von Raesfeld (Santa Clara and San Jose) had a combined 70 years of firefighting experience, while other alumni include Salinas' first female fire chief, Michele Vaughn, Santa Clara Deputy Fire Marshall Solmaz Brazil, Indian Valley Fire Chief Tony Balbiani, and retired firefighters Darryl Von Raesfeld (San Jose, 33 years), Ken Kehmna (Santa Clara, 31 years) and Jim Werner (Los Altos, 38 years), among others.