Public Services students from Stratford-upon-Avon College have been interacting with the local fire service to get a first-hand look at what life as a firefighter is like.
Firstly, students visited the Stratford-upon-Avon fire station in small groups to have a tour of the site, talk to current officers and get a feel for what the job would be like for them. They were shown the equipment used, the fire engine, as well as the rest areas, the food quarters, and the training area. The students even got to see the training tower where the firefighters would train for larger scale emergencies.
The students found the trip really enlightening. Student Edward Horsman remarked: “I really enjoyed the whole experience! My favourite bit was looking at the fire engine close up and learning about how it all works. The fire officers also went into a lot of detail about the jobs they do and the rules they follow; it was very interesting!”
Students were then visited at the College by Peter Bell (Watch Commander) and his on-call team who provided a presentation on the importance of road safety. This covered the ‘Fatal Four’; four distractions that can lead to accident and fatalities whilst driving – being on your phone, distraction from friends, speeding and alcohol.
Peter talked through each of the four and showed clips and footage including a fatality from a car and interviews from people in prison. It was hard hitting but aimed specifically and appropriately for the age group.
Peter commented: “We just want the students to have learnt something, to go away with this information and enjoy a long life. We try to make them understand the effects that this can have on them and on other people. The response has been great; the students listened and asked good questions. It was a valuable experience.”
Lecturer Oliver Wilkins emphasised the importance of students having access to hands-on careers information. He commented: “Public Service students are treated to multiple visits and trips throughout their course to help them develop both personally and professionally. We also aim to show them all their potential career options in a practical and hands on way, learning from people in the field. The trip was really engaging and interesting; as well as the students getting a close look at the workings of this career, we also got to learn about the new fire service apprenticeship scheme being offered. The visit from Peter was also really important and will benefit the students long term.”