Boulder Creek internship program providing students with hands on Fire Service training

Firefighters taught students in their internship program to use jaws of life

BOULDER CREEK, Calif. - For more than 20 years the Boulder Creek Fire District has been offering high school students hands on Fire Service training through an internship program.

Students from San Lorenzo Valley High School have the chance to apply for the class which runs from January through May.

Boulder Creek Fire District Battalion Chief Chuck Wise says they learn a wide range of practical skills, "We do everything from your basic equipment to the history of the fire department, go through pulling hose, ladders, today they're cutting up cars."

Chief Wise says this will give students an upper hand in the future if they choose to go into Fire Service, "This program is actually really great for us, a lot of the local fire departments have recruited from this program, our battalion chief started out as an intern and he's worked through the ranks." He says more than a dozen volunteer fire fighters at the Boulder Creek station started with this internship program.

One of the students participating, Senior Blake Kuehl says he wants to get into Fire Service after college. With how competitive it can be he hopes this program will work to his advantage, "I've been told the more programs that you do, the better you make your resume look the greater chances of you being looked at, and this is a steppingstone for that."

Junior, Codey Runcorn, says she's not only learning skills you can use in the field, but ones that will last a lifetime, "You definitely learn respect for everyone around you and how we're all different in certain ways and how we may not all be physically strong enough to do certain things, but if you learn certain techniques you can do anything you want." For anyone looking to get involved or any students who have the slightest interest in the fire profession, "a lot of firefighters come out here and give their time and give their effort and you learn so much and you make awesome mentors,"says Runcorn.

Chief Wise says students from Scotts Valley High School have also participated and they are looking to expand it to more schools in the area.

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