Firefighting is a challenging career that makes you think and tests you physically and emotionally. The conditions you face will change from call to call. There are many different areas of expertise you can pursue when you enter the fire service. Moraine Valley's Fire Service Operations program is designed to give students, who wish to become firefighters, the education and skills required to be qualified for fire department initial eligibility lists.

The program culminates with students completing Fire Academy training and performing a capstone internship with a local fire department. Students learn about the fire service through both classroom and hands-on instruction. Hands-on instruction will cover areas such as the use of hose nozzles, ladders, forcible entry tools, ventilation equipment, and supplied-air breathing apparatus. Instruction covers techniques for search-and-rescue and self-survival. You can go on to perform public education, investigate fires, perform fire inspections, become a hazardous materials specialist, or a technical rescue specialist.

What Can I Do With This Degree?

Using appropriate methods and equipment, fire science personnel attack and extinguish fires, cope with hazardous materials incidents, and are familiar with rescue techniques. In addition, they can administer emergency medical assistance to injured persons, maintain fire-fighting apparatus and equipment, and are knowledgeable of general building construction and related building codes.

Fire science personnel may work in urban and suburban areas, airports, chemical plants, other industrial sites, and rural areas like grasslands and forests.

With this degree, individuals can move into positions such as:

  • Firefighter
  • Public safety personnel
  • Industrial firefighter
  • Industrial loss prevention personnel

Job Outlook

Employment of firefighters is projected to grow 7 percent from 2016 to 2026, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Physically fit applicants with paramedic training will have the best job prospects.

Source: U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics

Fire Academy

Part of the Fire Service Operations degree program includes completing the Moraine Valley Fire Academy. It is comprised of eight courses offered twice annually. Successful students earn 22 hours of college credit, which are most of the core credits for the Fire Service Operations A.A.S. degree. 

Students will learn the mechanics and technical aspects of firefighting through hands-on experience. Live-fire training includes setting fire to buildings to conduct training drills with students.

Visit the Fire Academy page for a full list of admission requirements. 

Program Details

Program NameType of CredentialCurriculum CodeDepartment or Division
Fire Service OperationsA.A.S.1331Public Service

Related Programs


Emergency Medical Services (EMT-P Paramedic) Certificate

This program is for those who want to go into the public or private sector as paramedics. It can also be an alternative career path for those presently in the fire science field.

Emergency Medical Services A.A.S.

The Emergency Medical Services (EMS) A.A.S. degree is designed for students who wish to become paramedics, with either a public or private ambulance service.



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Konnor Parrish (Oak Lawn), shared his educational journey while on a panel for the Illinois Project Lead the Way meeting.


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Contact the program coordinator Andrew Hufnagl.