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Woodburn Fire District hosts graduation ceremony for area's firefighter recruits

COURTESY OF WOODBURN FIRE DISTRICT - Woodburn Fire District student resident volunteers, left to right, Zach Richardson, Troy Jordan and Ginger Becker.Woodburn Fire District announced the graduation of firefighter recruits from the Woodburn, Molalla, Aurora, and Canby fire districts.

Graduates of the June 18 ceremony, host by WFD, completed the "Firefighter 1" training program at the regional volunteer training academy. That program consisted of 185 hours of training in fire suppression and rescue techniques, fire ground operations, maintenance of equipment and tools and fire prevention skills.

WFD recruitment coordinator Jason Thompson said completing the training qualifies the newcomers to enter a burning structure as part of a crew to conduct fire extinguishment, occupant search and ventilation assignments.

Among the graduates were three WFD recruits, Zack Richardson, Troy Jordan and Ginger Becker. Fire district officials said the trio finished as the top-three in their class of 13. All three are also currently enrolled in fire science or emergency medical service degree programs at Chemeketa or Portland community colleges, as well as serving as part of WFD's student-resident volunteer program.

The resident volunteer program provides full-time college students with a place to live in two of the district's four fire stations and assistance with college tuition through a four-year federal grant awarded to the district in the fall of 2018.

"The student-resident program provides students with training and real-life experience in the fire service to augment their college studies," WFD Chief Joe Budge said. "We help our students with their career and education goals and they help the fire district meet its emergency response mission to the community."

Budge added that post Firefighter 1 completion, a thorough regimen of training continues with learning and practicing driving and operating all of the district's equipment. Recruits begin with the small apparatus on a pick-up chassis used to extinguish brush fires and then move on to fire engines and water tenders.

Interested in becoming a firefighter?

For information on the student resident program and other volunteer firefighter opportunities, contact the Woodburn Fire District recruitment coordinator Jason Thompson at 503-982-2360.

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