State Fire Academy
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About the State Fire Academy
In 1950, the General State Authority of Pennsylvania purchased 11 acres of ground for the construction of a State Fire School. In 1953, construction of the Pennsylvania State Fire "School" started is the extreme west end of Lewistown at 1150 Riverside Drive. It opened with the first class being held in June 1955. The full-time staff at that time consisted of an administrator, three instructors, clerical support, and a maintenance man. The "School" offered one and two week programs year-a-round. This "Resident" program attracted students from across Pennsylvania and its neighboring states. The courses were state mandated to be tuition free and remain tuition free today for in-state public emergency responders.
The State Fire "School" operated under various state agencies and today is part of the Office of the State Fire Commissioner. Also during its growing process, the name of the "School" changed to its present day name of Pennsylvania State Fire Academy. Its curriculum also changed and developed over its nearly 50-year existence. Today, the Academy's curriculum is very comprehensive and is responsive to all training and education needs of Pennsylvania's emergency responders. The current Academy Staff includes an Administrator, Assistant Administrator, Alternative Energy Program Manager, Administrative Officer, 2 full-time Resident Instructors, 160 adjunct instructors, 2 Certification Program Managers, 2 Field Education Supervisors, 3 Clerical positions, and a Maintenance Repairman.
The Academy's training and education opportunities have also changed as it has grown. Besides the "Resident Training Program" programs conducted at the Sate Fire Academy, it is also responsible for delivering special resident curriculum locally to emergency service organizations. The 2 Field Education Supervisors manage a statewide "Local Level Training Program". Each year, this program delivers over 3,000 programs across the Commonwealth; and, the majority of the programs are conducted right in the fire department station. The Academy also administers "Pennsylvania Fire Service Certification" program which has certified over 6,000 emergency responders in the Commonwealth.
The mission of the Pennsylvania State Fire Academy is:
- To provide the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with knowledgeable and competent emergency service personnel;
- To ensure responder safety;
- To deliver quality training and education; and,
- To value student time.
We will do this by:
- Developing, selecting, and conducting educationally-valid and technically up-to-date courses addressing the professional development needs of all participants in the fire service and emergency response community;
- Developing and maintaining a cadre of highly qualified and competent instructors to teach this curriculum;
- Constantly reviewing and updating all aspects of our curriculum and delivery system; and
- Acting as the educational hub of all other fire and emergency service training in Pennsylvania.
For more information on the State Fire Academy's program, call us at (PA residents) 1-800-459-4096 or (outside of PA) 717-248-1115.