Wildland Fire Science Programs

Singed earth on the edge of a forestA firefighter confronts a wall of flamesLittle Queens Fire, Boise NF, Atlanta, Idaho, 2013

Climbing the Ladder: Programs for First Responders

The Certificate of Completion in Wildland Fire Science will prepare students to immediately pursue employment with private, municipal, state or federal wildland firefighting organizations and provides a stepping-stone to advanced training in wildland fire suppression strategies and fireline leadership. This one-year program emphasizes a core curriculum in fire suppression theories, techniques, and basic fire behavior. Upon completion students have the required training to apply for entry level positions as wildland firefighters. Classroom sessions in Technical Course work are followed by fieldwork in all areas.

Upon completion of the certificate students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of basic wildland fire suppression strategies.
  • Display knowledge of basic wildfire behavior.
  • Maintain personal fitness and required conditioning for extended and multi-day wildfire assignments.
  • Display basic knowledge of entry-level equipment use and land navigation.

To learn more about program requirements, click on the links below:

Wildland Fire Science CC
Certificate Pathway
Wildland Fire Science Certificate Gainful Employment Disclosure


The Associate of Applied Science is designed to prepare students for entry into a career in wildland firefighting with private, municipal, state or federal wildland firefighting organizations. The two-year program includes basic and intermediate wildland fire suppression strategies, a foundation of forest science courses, as well as general education requirements.

Students with training and/or experience obtained previously through government agencies may receive credit-for-prior-learning and be eligible to receive a degree in an accelerated pathway. Students will have completed many prerequisite courses allowing transfer to a Bachelor degree program.

Upon completion of the degree students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of basic and intermediate wildland fire suppression strategies.
  • Apply basic leadership skills required to move towards supervision on active wildfire suppression efforts and oversight of firelineactivities.
  • Assess personal fitness level and understand the required conditioning for extended and multi-day wildfire assignments.
  • Utilize knowledge and skills required to make critical medical decisions for patients in remote locations.
  • Utilize foundational knowledge of forest ecology and wildfire behavior to plan and prepare for potential wildland fire incidents.

To learn more about program requirements, click on the links below:

Wildland Fire Science AAS
Degree Pathway

Wildland Fire Crosswalk (Credit for Prior Learning)

Wildland Fire Student Checklist


All technical coursework provided at ENMU-Ruidoso is endorsed and recognized by the National Wildfire Coordinating Group through a Memorandum of Understanding with the Pecos Zone Board in Southeast New Mexico. In addition to formal college credit, official NWCG certificates will be issued upon completion of coursework. These will transfer for credit with all Federal Land Management agencies, State Agencies and Municipal Fire Departments.

A blazing forest fire

Scholarship Opportunities
Sierra Blanca Wildland Fire Academy First Responder Scholarship Application

SBWFA logo

Click above to visit the Sierra Blanca Wildland Fire Academy website

Wildland Fire Career Links


Advising is a shared partnership between the student and advocate that maximizes the academic success of students by sharing information, tools and resources. This will empower students to make informed decisions to create appropriate academic and career plans to achieve their academic, career and life goals. Academic Advocates assist students to develop course schedules, ensure course selections are appropriate for each student’s academic plan, and monitor degree requirements and academic progress. Schedule an appointment with an advocate to discuss your degree plan, course options and/or overall information. Early advising sessions are encouraged to prepare for the next term’s registration period.

The Wildland Fire Science Program pathways were designed to offer a clear path for students to follow from the beginning of the program through the completion of the program towards graduation.

Medical/Accidental Injury Insurance Notice:  ENMU-Ruidoso does not provide medical insurance for students. ENMU-Ruidoso students are encouraged to obtain their own medical insurance for any illness, accident or injury that might occur during the span of this course. Visit www.healthcare.gov to shop for, compare costs and coverage benefits, and enroll in insurance coverage.

Questions? For more information, contact an advisor at ruidosoadvising@enmu.edu or call the Success Emporium at 575-315-1120