Fire Academy

Under the auspices of Fire Chief Florencio Soliz and Assistant Chief Chris Botello (Academy Training Coordinator), the ESD 4 Volunteer Fire and EMT Academy is a 26-week workforce development program designed to educate and train approximately 21 motivated individuals for a potential career in the fire service or in the emergency medical services. The program began it's initial cadet class in 1999 and now is a joint effort supported by the ESD 4 Board of Fire Commissioners and the Travis County Commissioner's Court, and co-sponsored by Travis County Health & Human Services.
The Academy seeks eligible applicants from diverse demographic populations and provides a viable career pathway into local, state, and national emergency service organizations. Each academy class follows the State Firemen and Fire Marshal Association and Emergency Medical Technician curriculums to prepare cadets for their Basic Firefighter certification through the Texas Commission on Fire Protection, and their EMT-B certifications through the National Registry for EMT's.

The ESD 4 Volunteer Academy is accredited through the Veteran's Administration as a training program for eligible veterans which qualifies them to utilize their G.I. Bill benefits during the training. Additionally, the Academy is unique in that there is no cost to participate for cadets selected into the program, and they are provided with a monthly expense stipend of $600 to assist in managing economic challenges. Also, all uniforms, firefighter personal protective equipment, fitness attire, and textbooks are provided while in the academy.

Applications for the ESD 4 Academy are made available online during the Open Application process time period as posted on the web site.  With appropriated funding each September, the cadet class generally begins in mid-October and continues through the following April. The Firefighter and EMT curriculums are implemented Monday through Friday from 8 to 5 pm, followed by 1 hour of fitness training each day. Additionally, there are mandatory Saturday skills training/proficiency days, weekend clinical and hospital ride outs, fire station ride outs, live fire training days, and full participation in community wildfire mitigation, safety education, and public outreach programs.

If you are interested in the ESD 4 Volunteer Academy it is highly recommended that prior to applying all potential applicants request and perform no less than 2 ride outs at our stations in order to gain proper insight and understanding of a potential career in the firefighting or emergency medical services.

To request a station ride out you must come by the District Office at 11800 N Lamar Blvd #4B Austin, TX 78753, between 8am and 4pm M-F.and complete a Ride Out Form, You must come in person with a valid Drivers License.  The office staff will schedule your ride out(s).  Contact the ESD 4 district office manager at 512-836-7566 if you have further questions about the Ride Out policy.
For further information about the Fire Academy, send an email to