Fire Science Technology

fire scheince

Spring 2016 Class Schedule

Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) Fire Science Technology Degree Fall 2015 Program Flyer

Southside Virginia Community College is one of only eight community colleges in Virginia that offers educational opportunities in Fire Science Technology. This two year, 68 credit hour program is designed to provide a broad-based knowledge of current and future advances in the fire and emergency services field. It will prepare students to enter the exciting and rewarding field of fire protection as a volunteer or career member. It will also prepare fire service personnel for promotional advancement opportunities in career departments or other related fields. Additionally, these specific classes provide increased knowledge of many fire protection fundamentals that are critical in the development of community volunteer fire and rescue personnel.


If this type of public safety involvement interests you, then we have the right program for you. This degree program offers students the opportunity to learn about technological advances in fire protection and homeland security areas while learning the latest in fire service education.

Classes in the Fire Science Technology degree programs are delivered as seated classes or hybrid courses across three SVCC educational sites.

Curriculum Options

Southside Virginia Community College offers three (3) options for success in the Fire Science Technology program. The Associate in Applied Science Degree in Fire Science Technology is a statewide standardized curriculum that was approved by the Virginia Community college System for use in all colleges that provide this program. In addition to the AAS degree (67 hours), there is a Certificate (33 hours), and a Career Studies Certificate for 12 hours.

Associate in Applied Science Degree in Fire Science Technology

Fire Science Technology Certificate

Career Studies Certificate

Dual enrollment opportunities in Fire Science Technology are now being offered in many high schools within our SVCC service area. With this option, high school students can take courses that prepare them to sit for state certification exams while earning high school and college credits. While pursuing credits, students also have the option of obtaining a Career Studies Certificate in FST with 16 hrs. of study. Once they have completed high school, their class credits can be fully integrated into the FST curriculum at SVCC and they can pursue their degree.

Fire Science Technology

Potential Careers in Fire & Emergency Services

Students can be valuable contributors in local volunteer departments or pursue a career as a firefighter, fire officer, fire protection specialist, fire/emergency service instructor, fire or building inspector, fire/arson investigator, rescue technician, emergency medical service provider, hazardous materials technician, emergency manager, occupational safety and risk management, sprinkler system designers, safety officials, fire insurance appraiser, fire equipment sales representative or other related positions.

Stay the Course

The Associate in Applied Science degree and certificate courses in Fire Science Technology are designed to provide the knowledge and skills needed for professional development in the fire and emergency services community. The FST program at SVCC aligns with the United States Fire Administration/National Fire Academy's Fire and Emergency Services Higher Education curricula and National Professional Development Model. Our 68 credit-hour program consists of twelve required FST courses that include:

  • Principles of Emergency Services
  • Fire Behavior and Combustion Hazardous Materials Chemistry
  • Hydraulics and Distribution Systems
  • Legal Aspects of the Fire Service
  • Fire Prevention
  • Fire and Emergency Services Safety and Survival
  • Building Construction
  • Strategy and Tactics
  • Fire and Risk Analysis
  • Fire Protection Systems
  • Fire Administration
  • General education courses are also required as listed in the statewide VCCS curriculum for Fire Science Technology.

The courses we offer meet the objectives of the United States Fire Administration's Fire and Emergency Services Higher Education (FESHE) professional development model.

Who Qualifies / Admission to the Program

Students can enter this degree program while achieving a Career Studies Certificate and state firefighter certification while still in high school. Interested adults who have completed a GED or high school diploma are eligible to place in the Fire Science Technology curriculum. Students who enter the Fire Science Technology program should meet with the FST program advisor prior to or during their first semester to map an individual pathway that will meet their goals. Tuition and Financial Aid

Financial aid is available for qualified applicants. To inquire about the possibilities of financial assistance with Fire Science Technology classes, call the toll free number at 1-888-220-SVCC or visit the college website at


    1. How long will it take to finish my degree?

      Full time students can finish the AAS degree in a minimum of two years but many take the program on a part-time basis at their own pace. Our program provides great flexibility for those who work, especially on a shift.

    2. What jobs can I get after completing my degree?

      The AAS degree in Fire Science Technology will allow you to go into many fields of the fire service such as Municipal and Federal Fire Departments, Industrial and Public Safety, Insurance Appraisal, Public Administration, and Specialty Suppression Services.

    3. Can I get college credit for my previous non-college training?

      You can receive college credits for your military and Fire Certification Training. Military and fire department personnel can receive college credit for both academic and fire related courses by having their training records evaluated. Students should contact the Fire Science Program Director for information on credit for certificates received on the job or through volunteer services. Firefighters can receive college credits for National and State Fire Training Certifications.

    4. Can I receive Virginia Department of Fire Programs Certifications while taking fire courses?

      Yes. Southside Virginia Community College through the VCCS has an agreement with the Virginia Department of Fire Programs to test for state certificates after completing selected classes and on meeting course pre-requisites.

    5. Where are Fire Science Technology classes offered?

      These classes are offered through V-Tel on the John H. Daniel Campus in Keysville, the Southern Virginia Higher Ed. Center in South Boston, the Southside Virginia Education Center in Emporia, and the Christanna Campus in Alberta.

    6. Will Fire Science Technology classes only be offered on the Christanna Campus?

      No, in addition to multiple offerings on SsVCC Christanna Campus, some courses will be are offered through V-Tel on the John H. Daniel campus and the SVHEC in South Boston.