A mix of chemistry and fire brings real-world experiences to life for students

A mix of chemistry and fire brings real-world experiences to life for students

March 16, 2017

New collaboration provides fire behavior education

Mid-State Technical College’s Fire Protection Technician program students received enhanced training Feb. 15 and 22 on how chemistry is involved in and pertinent to understanding fire behavior. The sessions were the first in an ongoing collaboration between Megan Kundinger, instructor, Natural Science, and Brandon Hagemen, instructor, Fire Protection Technician at Mid-State, to enhance student learning on chemistry components in protecting against fire.

“Chemistry concepts apply to fire behavior, and the students learn what connections there are and why they are important to operating safely on a fire scene,” said Hageman. “Knowledge of fire behavior and chemistry allows students to anticipate how fire will react to certain situations based on the chemistry properties of what is on fire.”

Fire Behavior and Combustion is a class that is traditionally delivered via lecture, but by incorporating a flipped learning concept, it allows students to maximize classroom time by exploring concepts in an interactive setting. It provides an opportunity to present difficult material in the form of visual aids and hands-on learning to help students better understand.

Hageman continued, “With the known shortages of volunteer firefighters, it is even more important that students graduate ready for the workforce with this vital real-world knowledge and skills, practical experience and confidence.”