Northern College already shares space with the Whitney fire brigade in the new integrated emergency services building at the Timmins campus.  Now, the college is going to be supplying firefighting students to be volunteer fire fighters.

Dean of emergency services programs Sarah Campbell says it’s an expansion of the existing partnership with the Timmins Fire Department.

“Within the first semester,” she points out, “we already train our students in health and safety, communications, personal protective equipment, breathing apparatus, fire behaviour and building construction for example.  And this already meets the basic beginning needs of a new volunteer recruit.”

So they come pre-trained, but the students must still get through the application process before joining the brigade.

“I think it’s essential that a student can graduate and say that they’ve actually been exposed to a working fire hall and pershaps ben on some calls.  I think that’s a unique experience that we can offer they may not necessarily get elsewhere in Ontario.”

The integrated services building on the college campus is also the east end base for paramedics.