The National Fire Academy’s (NFA’s) Managing Officer Program is a multi-year curriculum that introduces emerging emergency services leaders to personal and professional skills in change management, risk reduction and adaptive leadership. Acceptance into the program is the first step in your professional development as a career or volunteer fire/Emergency Medical Services (EMS) manager, and includes all four elements of professional development: education, training, experience and continuing education.
How the Managing Officer Program benefits you
The Managing Officer Program can help you, as a first- or mid-level officer/supervisor, jump-start professional development early on in your career or volunteer service. You will build on foundational management and technical competencies, learning to address issues of interpersonal and cultural sensitivity, professional ethics, and outcome-based performance. On completion of the program, you will:
- Be better prepared to grow professionally, improve your skills, and meet emerging professional challenges.
- Be able to embrace professional growth and development in your career.
- Enjoy a national perspective on professional development.
- Understand and appreciate the importance of professional development.
- Have a network of fire service professionals who support career development.
The Managing Officer Program consists of:
- Five prerequisite courses (online and classroom deliveries in your state).
- Four courses at the NFA in Emmitsburg, Maryland.
- A community-based capstone project.
A certificate of completion for the Managing Officer Program is awarded after the successful completion of all courses and the capstone project.
Selection criteria for the Managing Officer Program
The selection criteria for the Managing Officer Program are based on service and academic requirements.
At the time of application, you must be in a rank/position that meets either the Training or Experience requirements below. Your chief (or equivalent in nonfire organizations) verifies this training and experience through his or her signature on the application.
You should have a strong course completion background and have received training that has exposed you to more than just local requirements, such as regional and state training with responders from other jurisdictions.
This training can be demonstrated in one of many forms, which may include, but not be limited to, the following:
- Certification at the Fire Officer I level (based on National Fire Protection Association 1021, Standard for Fire Officer Professional Qualifications).
- Credentialed at the Fire Officer designation through the Center for Public Safety Excellence.
- Training at the fire or EMS leadership, management and supervisory level.
- State/Regional symposiums, conferences and workshops supporting leadership, management and supervision.
- Other training that supports the competencies identified for the Managing Officer in the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) Officer Development Handbook, Second Edition.
You must have experience as a supervising officer (such as fire operations, prevention, technical rescue, administration or EMS), which could include equivalent time as an “acting officer.” Your chief's signature on the application attests that you have supervised others.
To be considered for the Managing Officer Program, you must have:
Earned an associate degree from an accredited institution of higher education.
Earned a minimum of 60 college credit hours (or equivalent quarter-hours) toward the completion of a bachelor’s degree at an accredited institution of higher education.
In addition, you need to pass these courses before applying (available both locally and online through the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the NFA):
- Q0890, Introduction to Emergency Response to Terrorism
- ICS-100, Introduction to ICS for Operational First Responders
- ICS-200, Basic NIMS ICS for Operational First Responders
- IS-700a, National Incident Management System (NIMS), An Introduction
- IS-800b, National Response Framework, An Introduction