Explorer Post to focus on Fire and EMS career opportunities

A new Fire/EMS Explorer Post has been formed in Muscatine sponsored by the Muscatine Fire Department, providing a hands-on program for boys and girls 14- to 21-years-old to learn about careers in Fire and EMS.

“There was an explorer post a couple of years ago and we are bringing it back,” Benjamin Barrett, Muscatine firefighter, said.

An informational night will be held at 7 p.m., Thursday (Feb. 24), at the Public Safety Building, 312 East Fifth Street, Muscatine.

Exploring is about helping young men and women make an informed decision about future careers and determine if a career in the fire services is the right one for them. Typically, a young adult will either:

(1)   Get involved, learn about a career, and decide to pursue it;

(2)   Decide to pursue the activities as a community volunteer; or

(3)   Learn enough about the career to determine it is not the right fit for them.

“This is a great opportunity to learn about careers in Fire and EMS,” Barrett said. “Explorers get hands-on experience in a variety of career opportunities. They will also have the opportunity to earn certifications in areas like CPR.”

Fire & EMS careers include firefighters, forest firefighters, paramedics, emergency medical technicians (EMTs), fire marshals, fire inspector/investigator, disaster responders, emergency managers, search and rescue services, shelter managers, lifeguard, and ski patrol.

The program emphasizes five areas including career opportunities with hands-on, interactive experiences and learning how to develop potential contacts that may broaden employment options. Developing life skills is an emphasis to facilitate positive social interactions, citizenship encourages the desire to help others while respecting the basic rights of others. The Explorer program also emphasizes character development which will help members make ethical choices while facilitating service-learning opportunities.

The program also helps with a leadership experience, giving youth leaders the opportunity to coordinate program activities while learning leadership skills through the Explorer’s training material.

Do you want to get your hands dirty? Do you want to make a positive impact on the lives of members in your community? If so, then this is the program for you. All youth 15- to 20-years-old are welcome to come explore, learn, and join in the fun whether they live in Muscatine or outside the city limits.

For more information and to find out how you can join today, contact Assistant Fire Chief Michael Hartman (mhartman@muscatineiowa.gov) or Firefighter Benjamin Barrett (bbarrett@muscatineiowa.gov). You can also call the Public Safety Building at (563) 263-9233 and ask for either one.

You can also visit the Exploring website at www.exploring.org

About the Muscatine Fire Department:

The Muscatine Fire Department provides fire and emergency medical services, rescues (high angle, rope, water, etc.), building inspections, and public education for the City of Muscatine, and the surrounding unincorporated areas of Muscatine County with a combined population of 43,000 across 145 square miles while also providing HAZMAT for Muscatine, Louisa, Washington, Keokuk, and Henry counties. MFD firefighters and paramedics responded to 5,709 calls in 2021. The Muscatine Fire Department began as a volunteer fire company on January 7, 1875 and was established as a full-time department in January 1916. The Muscatine Fire Department ambulance service received the 2012 Career Ambulance service of the Year Award from Iowa Emergency Medical Services.