Moraine Valley Community College || Public Service || Fire Service Operations || FAQs

Fire Service Operations—FAQs

How long will the program take to complete?
Program length depends on the individual student. Student may complete the program in two years and must attend full-time.

Do you have to take the Fire Service Operations courses in sequential order?
It is not necessary to take the general education or elective courses in a particular order. However, some courses require prerequisites which will affect sequencing. It is not possible to take the Fire Academy courses or the Fire Service Internship and Seminar without being accepted into the Fire Academy experience. Please contact an academic advisor or the program coordinator for information on the selective admissions process. The fire academy classes are offered in the fall semester and the seminar and internship classes in the spring semester.

What can you do with an Associate in Applied Science Degree in Fire Service Operations?
There are a wide variety of employment opportunities for graduates. Graduates may apply for work in municipal fire department suppression divisions, fire inspection bureaus, fire investigation bureaus and fire insurance companies. Graduates will have the minimum certification to be employed by most area fire departments.

How difficult is it to find a job?
Competition for jobs in municipal fire service agencies is keen. For firefighter positions, you will need to take a test for each municipality and be placed on a waiting list.

Are courses offered at night and on weekends?
Fire service elective courses are offered during the day and evening. The fire academy courses are only offered during the day. Students will attend Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. and on Saturdays from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Classes are held at the college and at area fire stations within the district so students have easy access to state-of-the-art equipment being used in fire departments. Students are responsible for providing their own transportation to the fire stations. Check the course schedule for specific offerings and scheduling details.

Do the instructors have time to answer questions on a one-to-one basis?
Yes! The Coordinator of the Fire Service Management Program, Andy Hufnagl, will be happy to answer all of your questions regarding the Fire Service Operations Program. Feel free to contact Andy at (708) 608-4404 or

Will the courses from this program transfer to any four year schools?
Moraine Valley has established partnerships with four-year colleges and universities. Contact the program coordinator for more information. All of the program's required general education classes transfer to Southern Illinois University's Bachelor's Degree Program through a capstone agreement.

Is it possible for me to earn college credit for previous learning, such as firefighting certificates earned through the Office of the State Fire Marshal?
Yes! Contact the Academic Outreach Department in Building L, Room L244 or (708) 974-5710. You must have at least 15 credit hours of college credit earned at Moraine Valley and be currently enrolled in order to apply for Achieved Prior Learning credit. You must bring copies of your certificates when you apply for Achieved Prior Learning credit. There is a small fee for each class for which you will be given credit.

Is everyone eligible for the fire academy courses?
Everyone is eligible to apply to attend the fire academy training. Students must apply for fall fire academy admission during the spring semester. The selective criteria, as listed on the Admissions page, will determine which students are offered a spot in the academy courses. Only 20 students will be accepted in the academy courses each fall.

What do I wear for the Fire Academy?
Students who are accepted into the academy courses must lease Firefighting Turn-out Gear from a company selected by Moraine Valley. Students are responsible for the cost of the leased gear. The staff of the Fire Service Operations Program will size the student for the correct fit. The gear must be leased for a period long enough to cover the fall and spring semesters. If a student does not lease gear by mid-July, the student will be dropped from the academy courses and the next student on the admissions list will be admitted. Students eligible for Financial Aid may be able to apply Financial Aid benefits to the cost of leasing the required gear.