Finals are heating up for firefighting cadets

 With finals season here, one group of Del Mar College students found themselves in the line of fire rather than with a blue book and No. 2 pencil in front of them. 

Ten cadets with the Del Mar College Regional Fire Academy on Nov. 17 underwent one of the tests required by the Texas Commission on Fire Protection, which is part of DMC’s program completion requirements as well. The cadets were tasked with extinguishing three types of gas fires: a liquefied petroleum gas tank, a burning car and a dumpster fire. 

Dressed in full firefighting gear, cadets found themselves working together to extinguish the fires as a team. 

“The commission oversees firefighting training statewide and mandates the different types of scenarios the college performs during the live-fire burning evaluations,” said Michael Schmidt, DMC Fire Science Program director and instructor. 

These ten second-year cadets will be graduating soon with their degrees in fire science and with ample field experience under their belt. 

“With all the training and all the drills we did, it feels good to finally put them all together and do what we came here to do,” said cadet Dimitrios Watson.

This was the first time cadets put out gas fires in their training. Cadet Max Lee says it’s a different beast to work with.

“Visually you can see gas and the heat it gives off feels a lot stronger,” Lee said.

He went on to state while the training and test are of good use, in the real field it isn’t as predictable or controlled.

The end is almost near for these cadets, who soon move on to hazmat courses before studying for their state exams. 

For information about the College’s Fire Science Program visit or email at 

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