By Kevin Deutsch
Attention, future firefighters and paramedics: Here’s a chance to start on your dream career path.
Tamarac Fire Rescue’s Cadet Program is accepting applications from men and women, ages 13 to 18, interested in firefighting and EMS service. Launched in 2001, the developmental program introduces cadets to the life-saving professions and prepares them for future careers.
The initial Tamarac cadet class began with seven men and women who remained in the program for up to five years before graduating, according to the department.
“Cadets become part of the fire rescue family, starting with basic knowledge of the service, the equipment, and the tactics we use every day,” the department said in an announcement calling for new applicants.
The application process has several prerequisites:
- A parent-applicant meeting
- An applicant-peer meeting,
- Successful completion of assigned projects
- Follow-up meetings to train, inform and discuss the cadet’s future with the program and their career path
Cadets learn about Tamarac, the fire department’s stations, where equipment is located, and why firefighters utilize each piece. They begin each cadet meeting with a brief workout, are required to attend and participate in all meetings and are only allowed to miss a meeting if they have a reasonable excuse.
Meetings also consist of classroom and hands-on activities, equipment knowledge testing, and instruction on practical applications for equipment use.
Every cadet must successfully pass all requirements over a six-month period to be eligible for rides with on-duty professionals.
Cadets must also participate in multiple city activities, such as the Fourth of July fireworks show and the holiday tree lighting ceremony.
The program, too, requires they meet the same standard of professional appearance as regular fire department staff.
A new cadet class is scheduled to begin in late August 2022. Parents or would-be cadets interested in the program are asked to download the application and call Tamarac Fire Rescue’s Van Schoen at 954-597-3805.
- Kevin Deutsch is an award-winning crime journalist and author. A graduate of Florida International University, Kevin has worked on staff at The Miami Herald, New York Daily News, and The Palm Beach Post.
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