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Firefighter Recruit Training
All new recruits attend the Charlotte Fire Training Academy for approximately twenty-four weeks of paid training. This rigorous program includes classroom and practical instruction, as well as daily physical training.  Recruits must score at least 80% on all tests to pass and continue employment.  In addition to daily training, recruits respond to second-alarm fires.

Many new employees come to the Charlotte Fire Department with volunteer or professional firefighting experience. Regardless of prior training or certifications, we require everyone to attend the Academy.  This experience is an important introduction to the Charlotte Fire Department.


The Charlotte Police & Fire Training Academy is located at 1770 Shopton Road.

Training FAQ's

Q:  How long is recruit training?
The length of the training program varies, but typically lasts about 26 weeks.

Q:  What are working hours during the training program?
A:  Hours will vary every day.  Physical training begins each morning, and the rest of the day is filled with classroom and hands-on instruction.  In addition, recruits are on call to respond to second-alarm fires.  You will be paid while you complete the training program, but because of the time commitment our program requires, you will not be able to hold other employment while completing the training program.

Q:  Do I need to have previous fire experience to be successful?
A:  While previous fire or rescue experience is always helpful, it is not required.  Our training program is comprehensive and will give you all the tools and information you need to be successful as a Firefighter.

Q:  Why do I need an EMT certification?
A:  Charlotte Firefighters are first responders to medical emergencies, and all Firefighters are required to hold and maintain EMT-B certification.  If you are not certified at the time of hire, you must complete the certification within one year of hire to continue employment.

Q:  What if I already hold an EMT certification?
A:  If you are already a North Carolina or Nationally Registered EMT, you will still need to obtain the Defibrillator certification in Mecklenburg County. If you hold EMT certification from another state, please check with the North Carolina Office of Emergency Medical Services for reciprocity requirements. 

More information is available on our Training Division page.