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At FESTI, we aim to give you the answers you need to get ahead. Here are some of the frequently asked questions about training at FESTI. Need more from us?
Get in touch with us.

What firefighting training does FESTI offer?

Whether you’re new to firefighting or an established professional looking to upgrade your skills, FESTI offers a range of firefighting and emergency response courses. With our unique airport location, we are also able to offer aircraft rescue fire fighting training.

We’ve designed our professional, cost-effective firefighting and rescue training to be an A-Z education experience that provides all the tools you need to succeed. People who come to FESTI are making a career in essential emergency services, so we’re dedicated to giving our students the high-quality training they deserve. To learn more about our firefighting training, click here.

What emergency service training does FESTI offer?

FESTI offers a variety of emergency service training beyond firefighting alone, including emergency medical training courses. We also offer training in technical rescue, hazardous materials and airport wildlife management. To learn more about our emergency service training, click here.

Does FESTI offer CPR and first aid certification?

FESTI offers several CPR and first aid courses. Along with Standard First Aid and CPR training, which are open to anyone interested in gaining these important skills, we also offer training for emergency medical responders, including renewal training for working professionals. To learn more about our CPR and first aid courses, click here.

How do I register for a course at FESTI?

Once you’re familiar with the courses you want to take through FESTI, their requirements and associated costs, you can create a profile and register online, to do so click here.

What I can I expect when I register for a course at FESTI?

People who join FESTI can expect a range of unique training opportunities and real-world experiences that they won’t get anywhere else. Here’s what to expect when you join:

  • Clean, modern facilities
  • Small class sizes
  • Complete range of fire hall equipment
  • Unique grounds outfitted for a multitude of mock rescue scenarios
  • Full-time faculty, full-time support
  • Emphasis on academics
  • Affiliations with Toronto Pearson Fire & Emergency Services
  • Access to FESTI’s extensive partnerships
  • A student mentoring program
  • Leadership and corporate development
  • Assistance with accommodations
  • Consultation services
  • A location adjacent to the world-class city of Toronto

At FESTI, we address training needs at all levels of your career. You may start your education with us, then find yourself back here one day upgrading your skills or focusing on developing your leadership. It is not uncommon for whole teams to train together at FESTI.

How do I become a firefighter?

A career as a firefighter starts with a thirst for excitement and passion for helping others. In general, these are the steps to becoming a firefighter through FESTI:

  • Obtain your high school diploma
  • Get your standard first aid and CPR level C certificates
  • Assess your physical aptitude: 20/30 vision, complete FESTI physical activity readiness questionnaire
  • Take the NFPA 1001 level I-II training program at FESTI or the Blended online program
  • Write and pass the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management exam to achieve your certification
  • OPTION: Complete 6-step candidate testing services through the Ontario Fire Administration Inc.
  • Apply for jobs with our support.

What is the average salary of a firefighter in Canada?

As any member of the FESTI team will tell you, becoming a firefighter is incredibly rewarding. As a firefighter, your salary will vary based on location, so it is best to research your specific area for the most accurate compensation information. In Canada, the average salary for a firefighter is $96,000 to $125,000 (as of 2019).

Firefighters are also eligible for group benefits typically specific to their collective agreement. Vision care, medical, and paramedical services are often included. Pension plans and sick leave benefits are also included in many firefighter compensation packages.

Of course, you can also expect an exciting and worthwhile career that’s far from the usual 9-to-5 desk job.

When it comes to emergency and firefighter training, the Fire and Emergency Service Training Institute (FESTI) offers world-class facilities operated by experts in emergency services, occupational health and safety, and airport emergency preparedness.

Where Is FESTI’s Training Location?

Our firefighter academy is a part of Toronto Pearson International Airport in conjunction with the airport’s fully operational fire and emergency service. There are three operational stations separate from FESTI with Station 1 being our headquarters. We have a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified building with training rooms situated near our outdoor training facilities on 40 acres of land.

Does FESTI Provide Uniforms, Gears, and Other Equipment Required During Training?

Yes, registration for our firefighting training courses includes use of a FESTI uniform, helmet, flash hood, firefighting gloves, rope rescue gloves, firefighting boots, and gear bag. We also supply PPE for the participant to keep and offer rentals for firefighter protective clothing such as bunker gear pants and coats. Each participant is responsible for providing their own black CSA-approved safety boots.

Does FESTI Offer Any Part-Time Firefighting Training Courses?

Yes. We offer our NFPA 1001 Level I-II Firefighter Training Blended Program with an online theoretical learning portion. It spans over four months and has a self-paced learning schedule. The course also has a 20-day onsite practical skills training portion.

Does FESTI Offer Online Training Courses?

Our online firefighter training course for NFPA 1001 Level I-II Firefighter Training Blended Program is the theoretical portion that can be completed over a four-month span. To be certified, the course requires onsite training for a 20-day period. The online course portion includes reading materials, videos, individual assignments, lesson quizzes, a mid-term exam, and a final exam.

Do I Get the Same Qualification from Both the Full-Time & Blended (Online) Programs?

Yes, the NFPA 1001 Level I-II Firefighter Training In-House Program and the NFPA 1001 Level I-II Firefighter Training Blended Program offer the same theoretical and practical training. Completion of either course provides official certification.

How and When Do I Get My Results/Certifications?

All of the examination results and certifications at FESTI are available four months after completion. All participants will be contacted with results.

Graduates must obtain a 70% minimum average with a completion of all required practical skills tested. The Office of the Fire Marshal’s (OFM) provincial examination and practical skills assessment is performed during the final week of the course.

Completion of the FESTI program provides IFSAC Seals and application for Pro Board Seals in achievement for NFPA 1001 Firefighter Level I, NFPA 1001 Firefighter Level II, NFPA 1072 Hazardous Materials Awareness, and NFPA 1072 Hazardous Materials Operations. It will also present international recognized accreditation from the Institution of Fire Engineers.

How Long Are My Certificates Valid For?

  • Red Cross Standard First Aid, CPR Level A or C, and AED  –  to be considered current, this particular certification requires yearly refresher training, and re-certification every three (3) years
  • Red Cross Emergency Medical Responder – re-certification every three (3) years
  • FESTI Preservice Diploma or Completion Certificate – this certification has no expiry
  • FESTI Program Completion Certificate (this includes any non-vocational course or program) – this certification has no expiry
  • Ontario Fire Marshal IFSAC Seals – no expiry

What If I Didn’t Pass the Training (Failed)?

For students who do not succeed in training tests, the tests can be retaken after a time period of 30 days has lapsed. A failed course requires the entire course to be retaken.

Does FESTI Offer Training to Only Toronto Students (Firefighters)?

No, anyone across Canada that is interested in the programs at FESTI can apply with the proper credentials.

Does FESTI Accept Individual Registration or Group/Bulk Registrations?

Our firefighting and emergency services training is accessible to individual, organizations, and corporate businesses.

Does FESTI Offer Customized Training Programs?

FESTI’s emergency personnel and firefighter courses in Ontario can be customized to suit the specific needs of your organization. Upon request, we will work to understand your team’s unique challenges and opportunities to grow by developing the proper tools and experiences to get appropriate results.

How Can I Upgrade My First Aid and CPR to EMR?

We offer medical courses for the general public and for trained medical professionals. Our programs provide modern teaching aids and real-world emergency scenarios. Prerequisites for our medical service programs include participants’ certification in Standard First Aid, with CPR level C and AED certification, and a three-year certification in Emergency Medical Responder.

Can I Cancel My Registration?

FESTI offers a cancellation/refund procedure for scheduled non-vocational courses with refunds calculated as of the official date of withdrawal from the course. A refund will only be considered with written notification and will be assessed in accordance with the timelines of the cancellation policy. Students withdrawing with 30 days or less before a course starts will not receive a refund. Students wishing to transfer to another date may do so but will be required to pay a $25.00 processing fee.

For courses with pre-course material, our refund/cancellation policy requires written notice of withdrawal from training received 30 days prior to mail out date as stated in the course schedule to receive a 100% refund. For withdrawal after pre-course materials have been sent out, a refund of fees paid for the program except for 20% of total fees or $500 (whichever is less) will be received. There are no refunds for withdrawal from a course during the first 14 days of the pre-course material program.

Are There Any Recurring Fees or Hidden Costs?

All program costs and extra fees are clearly listed on the program’s individual website. There is a non-refundable application fee of $150 for each training course. Transfers for courses require an additional non-refundable $150 processing fee. Courses may require purchase of textbook(s) outside of the course cost.

Participants are required to supply their own meals, accommodation, and Black CSA-approved safety boots to be worn onsite at FESTI.

Can I Still Register If I Am in the Military Reserve?

Yes, FESTI offers all emergency and fire training services to members of the Canadian Army Reserve.

Do You Offer Any Accommodations During the Training Period?

Due to our location at Toronto Pearson International Airport, we do not offer accommodations onsite at our facilities. We provide a list of suitable accommodations located nearby not associated with FESTI.

Are Lunches Included in Your Training Courses?

No, FESTI does not provide meals during the course programs.

When can I expect my Tuition and Enrolment Certificate [T2202] from FESTI?

We aim to mail all Tuition and Enrolment Certificates [T2202] by end of February.

Will I be able to continue my full-time job while doing the online portion of the Blended program?  Do I have to be online and complete certain modules/components at a certain time?

Aside from the first day which is generally also your online orientation class, the online portion of the course is done at your own pace.  There is no specific time you must be logged on or have your work completed by however, FESTI does recommend students dedicate at least 10 – 12 hours a week to the course material to complete everything in time for the In-House component.

On the first day of your program there is an optional scheduled on-line orientation that covers program expectations and tips to be successful.  It is recorded and emailed to all students within 24 hours.  Aside from that there are no other scheduled sessions and no requirements to be logged on at certain times.  There are program benchmarks (due dates) that must be met to stay on track.  The course instructor will review this during the orientation and provide those dates.  The online program is due 1 week prior to the onsite orientations.  To stay on track FESTI recommends students dedicate at least 12-18 hours a week to course materials.

Can I use OSAP at FESTI?  If not, what do you accept?

FESTI is not registered with OSAP.  Most students requiring financial assistance either use funds procured from RSP investments or, go through the Better Jobs Ontario program.  https://www.ontario.ca/page/better-jobs-ontario

What are the main differences between your In-House program versus your Blended program?

The in-house is delivered as an intense, 18-week (85 days), in-class program, on-site within our sophisticated training facility and fire ground. 

Our blended program it is a work at your own pace to complete the online modules. We recommend that students dedicate a minimum of 12-18 hours weekly in order to complete in the 4 months span. There is no specific sign in times for class however the first day of classes includes a kick off call with one of your instructors explaining how to navigate through the platform. This will be a zoom meeting and onboarding details are released to students 30 days prior to start date.

Courses only offered with the In-House program:

  • NFPA 1006, Chapter 5 – Technical Rescuer Course
  • Interview Essentials
  • Red Cross – Emergency Medical Responder Course (EMR)

However, we do offer these courses at FESTI, and our students & alumni receive a 10% discount

I registered to a course I can no longer commit to.  Can I get a refund?

For vocational programs, requests made prior to the first day of class are subject to a $500 + HST administration fee which will be deducted from the amount paid.  Also note that the Vocational Application Fee is not refundable.   In addition:

Blended:  After the online starts, the student’s refund will be based upon how much of the course has been completed already

  • In House:  After the start date, the student’s refund will be pro-rated to last day attended up to 50% less uniform, gear, textbooks and administration fee.
  • Non-Vocational:  Withdrawal requests must be received 5 business days or more prior to course commencement to be eligible for refunds.  Transfer requests are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.  *Online delivered courses are final sale.  There will be no refunds issued.

What methods of payment do you accept?

FESTI accepts payments by:

  • Debit/Credit – You may need to contact your card provider to advise you will be making a large cost purchase
  • Certified Cheque
  • Money Order

I paid my tuition but cannot find a copy of my receipt

Try searching your emails using the keyword “Stripe” in your search.  If this does not work, kindly advise and we will investigate further.

What makes you better than some of the other schools out there?

FESTI offers the following at our sophisticated training facility and fire ground:

  • Two Class A Burn Structures for onsite use
  • Five days of live burns
  • A skills development day
  • An Interview Essentials class
  • More practical experience

Do you offer tours of your facility?

Yes!  FESTI offers tours Monday to Friday between the hours of 9am to 3pm.  Kindly reach out to us to schedule a time and we will do our best to accommodate.

I have my Basic Life Savers certificate, which is similar to Standard First Aid, is that good enough?

No.  It is mandatory that all applicants have an active Standard First Aid CPR Level “C” with AED.  Also note, if the certification is set to expire during your attendance at FESTI, we are unable to approve your application.  We can approve your application conditionally if you provide us with proof you have enrolled in a SFA course clearly showing your name and date of the course (which takes place before your start date) contingent upon you providing us with your certificate once received.

When will you be releasing your next school year schedule?

We usually post our new year schedule during the 3rd quarter of the current school year. (July/August) so stay tuned!

I attended “X” school but need to retake one of the OFM tests.  Can I take the test through FESTI?

Only past FESTI alumni can retake OFM tests at FESTI.  We suggest you reach out to your original school to see about scheduling a retake there.

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