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11:20 AM Fri, Nov. 16th

Forest Service looking for women interested in wildland firefighting

Women in Wildland Fire Boot Camp applications due Aug. 31

Participants of the 2017 Women in Wildland Fire Boot Camp go through field training in the Prescott National Forest. (Prescott National Forest/Courtesy)

Participants of the 2017 Women in Wildland Fire Boot Camp go through field training in the Prescott National Forest. (Prescott National Forest/Courtesy)

The Prescott National Forest (PNF) is seeking career-focused women to be on-call wildland firefighters for the 2019 fire season.

These on-call positions will provide support to wildland fire operations over the summer and can help pave the way for future employment and career advancement with the Forest Service, according to a PNF news release.

The Women in Wildland Fire Boot Camp is designed to provide comprehensive firefighter training and orientation. Once complete, participants will be eligible to apply for temporary positions as wildland firefighters, according to the news release.

The Prescott National Forest is looking to select 20 applicants to attend the program over the course of two weekends, Oct. 5-7 and Oct. 12-14. To receive a certificate and be fully qualified, participants must attend both weekends and complete all required training. The deadline for applications is Friday, Aug. 31.

Although the training focuses on women in wildland fire, all interested parties are encouraged to apply, said Cheyenne Warner, a spokesperson for the Prescott National Forest.

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Participants of the 2017 Women in Wildland Fire Boot Camp go through field training in the Prescott National Forest. (Prescott National Forest/Courtesy)

Our target audience is women, but of course we are welcoming and accepting all applicants to this program, and all of those applicants are evaluated equally,” Warner said.

No previous experience is required. However, applicants must be between 18-37 years old and be in good mental and physical condition, according to an outreach notice.

This is the second year the Prescott National Forest has offered the Women in Wildland Fire Boot Camp. Last year, nine applicants went through the program, Warner said. Six were women and three were men. One of the men was hired onto a Prescott National Forest engine and one of the women joined a Forest Service crew in a different part of the state.

Warner said the primary reason the program is offered is to simply encourage more women to serve as wildland firefighters for the Forest Service.

The most recent statistic available states that in 2013, only 11 percent of federal permanent wildland firefighters were female, she said. For more information about the program and to submit an application, go to https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/prescott/about-forest/jobs/?cid=FSEPRD558946. Warner can also be reached for any questions by calling 928-777-5668.