Feather River College is in the first year of a pilot program offering a $1,000 yearly incentive to any FRC employee possessing a valid Federal Wildland Firefighter Basic 32 “Red Card” or CalFire “Firefighter 1” designation. Eight FRC employees earned the certification for the fall semester to receive the incentive, which is available once per academic year. The firefighter incentive is designed to help provide trained individuals for the good of Plumas County, recognizing the wildfire exposure that permeates all of Plumas County and our region.
The eight employees receiving the certification came from across campus: three are full-time faculty; one is part-time adjunct faculty; three hold classified support positions; and one is an administrator. FRC does not have plans to create a campus fire station, nor are employees required to join fire crews. The intent of the incentive is to collectively increase the fire training and knowledge-base for FRC and Plumas County residents.
“As we have witnessed over the past few years, Northeastern California is vulnerable to severe wildfire risk. FRC has a goal to offer student programs and training beneficial to preventing future catastrophes. We felt it was important that our employees were also encouraged to receive similar skills,” commented Dr. Kevin Trutna, Feather River College Superintendent/President. The goal was to provide individuals with specific knowledge on fire prevention and suppression.
Board of Trustees President Guy McNett stated, “Our support shows that FRC takes the threat of fire seriously and this incentive puts resources behind this effort in Plumas County.” Dr. Trutna added, “We hope that employees holding this certification will join local volunteer fire departments and encourage others to receive training.”
The wildland firefighter certificate incentive is one of many steps FRC has taken recently including becoming only the second college nationwide to earn a Fire Safe Community designation, conducting prescribed burns on the FRC campus forest, and the application for a bachelor’s degree in Ecosystem Restoration and Applied Fire Management.
The National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) provides information and training modules for the Basic 32 Red Card. This is a nationally recognized designation and available at many locations throughout Plumas County and FRC spring semester courses. For more information, visit or NWCG Training Catalog | NWCG. The CalFire Firefighter 1 certification is only valid in California and offered through certified CalFire instructors. Questions about training qualifications or training dates can be directed to either FRC Campus Forest Health & Fuels Coordinator Jon Dvorak, [email protected], 530-283-0202 Ext. 362 or Plumas Underburn Coordinator Matt West, [email protected], 530-927-5297.