LINDALE, Texas (KETK) — Lindale High School is offering a new fire program for students this year that offers a dual credit, fire certification program within Lindale ISD. The class is offered because of the partnership between Tyler Junior College, Lindale ISD and the Lindale Volunteer Fire Department.

Students can complete the course over the span of two years and earn their state certification for basic instructional firefighting. At the end of the program, students will have up to 24 hours of college credit, and the district will cover all the costs associated.

“This is a program that these students can go through over the next two years and leave high school with a state certification in firefighting, in basic instructional training,” said Jeff Akin, TJC Programming Coordinator.

Akin, who was with Tyler Fire for 25 years and is now instructing the class, is happy that students are taking up this opportunity.

“I was very excited to have a program just like this. To be able to, in a high school learn about firefighting you don’t ever see that anywhere,” said Cayden Walker, a Lindale High School senior.

Walker is a senior this year, and he’s hoping to follow in his family’s footsteps. 

“My dad was super excited, Lee Walker, he’s a flight nurse up in Oklahoma,” said Walker.

The course started with the history of firefighting and now working on the next course. 

“Starting communications now, so just goes through all the different subjects that firefighters need to know,” said Akin.

Also, a positive for gaining future East Texas responders. 

“Recruiting for the Lindale Fire Department to gain volunteers in the future,” said Akin.

Cayden said he’ll continue the program into college following graduation. 

“The first two semesters we will get through a lot, but I still have to do a semester at TJC,” said Walker.

The program would not be possible without the help of TJC and the Lindale Volunteer Fire Department. A way for students to explore their interests in emergency response, and maybe even get a head start on their future careers.