The Frankfort Fire Protection District will host a one-day statewide cadet fire school facilitated by the Illinois Fire Service Institute on Nov. 3.
The program is expected to draw 40-70 cadets from across the state, according to Brian Adcock, a firefighter engineer and training coordinator for the district.
The district received a grant from the Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal to host the event. Cadets who attend will learn firefighting skills, such as how to use a breathing apparatus and deploy ladders.
This is the second time Frankfort has hosted the event.
Frankfort is one of a handful of suburbs that oversees an ongoing training program geared toward preparing young people for a career in firefighting.
The Frankfort Fire District Cadet Program is more than 30 years old and is open to young people between the ages of 16 and 21.
“Everything I’ve known in fire service, I learned from the cadet program,” said Jordan Kreml, who is the district cadet program's chief.
The volunteer paramilitary training program teaches fire service history and EMS services. Cadets are encouraged to pursue EMT training at age 18. They then attend the Frankfort Fire Basic Operations Fire Academy, followed by paramedic school. Cadets who follow the trajectory of the program are typically prepared to begin a career in fire service by age 21.
Kreml is currently enrolled in EMT training and hopes to enter the fire academy in January.
According to Adcock, the cadet program instills participating young adults with a sense pride, respect and discipline. Cadets provide public education about fire safety, ride along with professional firefighters, volunteer in the community and service the district’s firefighter rehab unit in extreme weather.
Approximately 13 former cadets are now professional firefighters for the Frankfort fire district.
The program is funded by the Frankfort Fire District Foundation, fire station vending machines and a small portion of the district general fund.
Cadet program applications are accepted as needed on a quarterly rolling basis. To apply, visit the fire district website.
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