Last week, 26 middle school students had the chance to try on firefighter gear and ask burning questions about what it’s like to be a Spokane Valley firefighter. Teams of off-duty firefighters spoke with students participating in the HUB 360 after-school program.
Questions ranged from “what is a typical day?” to “what kind of animals have you rescued?”
Students had an opportunity to dress as if they were preparing for a structure fire, wildland fire or emergency medical services call. They were surprised to learn that more than 85 percent of SVFD emergency calls are medical in nature, not fires.
SVFD firefighters talked with the 6th, 7th and 8th graders about the importance of working hard in school, being physically active, staying out of trouble and pursuing education beyond high school. They shared information about the Fire Science and Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) programs taught by SVFD firefighters at Spokane Valley Tech as a great way to explore these careers, get experience and certifications and/or college credits in high school.
Each firefighter shared their career path with the students, as well as a few interesting stories about memorable incident responses. They also talked about the steps to become a firefighter and encouraged interested students to consider a volunteer program to gain experience (SVFD does not have a volunteer program, but many neighboring fire departments do, including Spokane County Fire District #8 and #9).
HUB 360 is a HUB Sports Center program serving students from eight East, West and Central Valley middle schools from 3 -6 pm on school days. Students receive help with their school work, learn about healthy living, have the opportunity to experience a variety of sports and enjoy a snack. Spokane Valley Fire Department is one of many community businesses and individuals who come and share their expertise in skills, trades, industries and/or talents with the students. The HUB’s goal is to provide a safe place for these students to come be a part of a community and help build a well-rounded person through enrichment, physical activity and academic study. There is no fee for students to attend the HUB 360 program.