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Career and Education Opportunities for Fire Fighters in Cleveland, Ohio

There are many career and education opportunities for fire fighters in the Cleveland, Ohio area. About 19,830 people are currently employed as fire fighters in Ohio. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 9% to about 21,630 people employed. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for fire fighters are expected to grow by about 18.5%. In general, fire fighters control and extinguish municipal fires, protect life and property and conduct rescue efforts.

Fire fighters earn about $18 hourly or $38,700 per year on average in Ohio and about $21 per hour or $44,260 annually on average nationally. Fire fighters earn less than people working in the category of Fire Control generally in Ohio and less than people in the Fire Control category nationally. People working as fire fighters can fill a number of jobs, such as: rescue worker, tiller man, and marine fire fighter.

The Cleveland area is home to 103 schools of higher education, including four within twenty-five miles of Cleveland where you can get a degree as a fire fighter. The most common level of education for fire fighters is a post-secondary certificate. It will take a short time to learn to be a fire fighter if you already have a high school diploma.


In general, fire fighters control and extinguish municipal fires, protect life and property and conduct rescue efforts.

Fire fighters decide on and attach hose nozzles, depending on fire type, and direct streams of water or chemicals onto fires. They also lay hose lines and connect them to water supplies. Equally important, fire fighters have to respond to fire alarms and other calls for assistance. They are often called upon to dress with equipment such as fire resistant clothing and breathing apparatus. They are expected to clean and maintain fire stations and fire fighting equipment and apparatus. Finally, fire fighters ready written reports that detail specifics of fire incidents.

Every day, fire fighters are expected to be able to lift, push and move large and heavy objects. They need to respond quickly in general. It is also important that they exert themselves over and over again for long periods of time.

It is important for fire fighters to spray foam onto runways and rescue aircraft crew and passengers in air-crash emergencies. They are often called upon to examine buildings for fire hazards and adherence to fire prevention ordinances, testing and checking smoke alarms and fire suppression equipment as needed. They also salvage property by removing broken glass, pumping out water, and ventilating buildings to remove smoke. They are sometimes expected to establish firelines to inhibit unauthorized persons from entering areas near fires. Somewhat less frequently, fire fighters are also expected to examine fire sites after flames have been extinguished to insure that there is no further danger.

Fire fighters sometimes are asked to protect property from water and smoke using waterproof salvage covers and deodorants. They also have to be able to take action to contain hazardous chemicals that might catch fire or spill and participate in courses, seminars and conferences, and study fire science literature, to learn firefighting techniques. And finally, they sometimes have to lay hose lines and connect them to water supplies.

Like many other jobs, fire fighters must be reliable and believe in cooperation and coordination.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Cleveland include:

  • Fire Code Inspector. Inspect buildings and equipment to detect fire hazards and enforce state and local regulations.
  • Fire Inspector. Conduct investigations to determine causes of fires and explosions.
  • Forest Fire Lookout. Enforce fire regulations and inspect for forest fire hazards. Report forest fires and weather conditions.
  • Forest Firefighter. Control and suppress fires in forests or vacant public land.
  • Lifeguard. Monitor recreational areas, such as pools, beaches, or ski slopes to provide assistance and protection to participants.
  • Security Guard. Guard, patrol, or monitor premises to prevent theft, violence, or infractions of rules.


University of Akron Main Campus - Akron, OH

University of Akron Main Campus, 302 Buchtel Common, Akron, OH 44325-4702. University of Akron Main Campus is a large university located in Akron, Ohio. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 24,202 students. University of Akron Main Campus has less than one year, associate's degree, and bachelor's degree programs in Fire Protection, Other Specialties which graduated zero, three, and twenty-eight students respectively in 2008.

Lakeland Community College - Kirtland, OH

Lakeland Community College, 7700 Clocktower Dr, Kirtland, OH 44094-5198. Lakeland Community College is a medium sized college located in Kirtland, Ohio. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 8,924 students. Lakeland Community College has a one to two year program in Fire Science/Firefighting which graduated one student in 2008.

Lorain County Community College - Elyria, OH

Lorain County Community College, 1005 North Abbe Rd, Elyria, OH 44035-1691. Lorain County Community College is a large college located in Elyria, Ohio. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 11,242 students. Lorain County Community College has an associate's degree program in Fire Science/Firefighting which graduated four students in 2008.

Auburn Career Center - Concord Twp, OH

Auburn Career Center, 8140 Auburn Rd, Concord Twp, OH 44077. Auburn Career Center is a small school located in Concord Twp, Ohio. It is a public school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 250 students. Auburn Career Center has a less than one year program in Fire Science/Firefighting which graduated twenty-five students in 2008.


Oxygen Administration: Prepares laypersons and professional rescuers with the knowledge and skills needed to know when and how to use supplemental oxygen and breathing devices.

For more information, see the American Red Cross website.

Incident Safety Officer - Fire Suppression Certification: A fire department incident safety officer's mission is to promote safety standards and practices in the fire, rescue and emergency services community.

For more information, see the Fire Department Safety Officers Association website.

Health & Safety Officer Certification: Standard on Fire Department Occupational Safety and Health Programs.

For more information, see the Fire Department Safety Officers Association website.

Special Hazards Suppression Systems: This certification program is designed for engineering technicians engaged in the detailing and layout and/or installation and maintenance related to special hazards suppression systems.

For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.


Cleveland, Ohio
Cleveland, Ohio photo by FlickreviewR

Cleveland is situated in Cuyahoga County, Ohio. It has a population of over 433,748, which has shrunk by 9.3% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Cleveland, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Cleveland are valued at $94,100 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, one hundred nine new homes were built in Cleveland, down from one hundred eighty-four the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Cleveland are health care, accommodation and food services, and educational services. For men, it is metal and metal products, construction, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 26 minutes. More than 11.4% of Cleveland residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 3.8%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Cleveland is 10.5%, which is greater than Ohio's average of 10.0%.

The percentage of Cleveland residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.8%, is more than both the national and state average. Hellenic Orthodox Church of the Annunciation, Abyssinia Baptist Church and Highland Christian Church are among the churches located in Cleveland. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church and the American Baptist Churches in the USA.

Cleveland is home to the Mastick Woods Golf Course and the Dock Number 32 as well as Shaker Square Historic District and Newton Avenue Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Shaker-Moreland Shopping Center, Shaker Square Shopping Center and Clark West 30th Shopping Center. Visitors to Cleveland can choose from Hilton Garden Inn Cleveland Gateway, Airport Sheraton and Extended Stayamerica for temporary stays in the area.