Champaign Fire Department Explorer’s Program
When asked the question, what influenced them to join the Champaign Fire Department’s Explorer Program?, nearly all of the responses from the cadets were that a family member or relative was a fire fighter.
For over 20 years, the Champaign Fire Department’s Explorer Program, Explorers Post 207, chartered through “Learning for Life,” a subsidiary of Boys Scouts of America, has introduced youth ages 14 to 21, to a career in the fire service, and seeks to expand the reach of the Fire Department to reflect the community they serve.
Fire Lt. Dorval Norwood facilitates the program and is assisted by Fire Lieutenant Mark Clapp, Urbana Fire and Rescue, and Greg Fisher (retired, Champaign Fire Department) who founded the program for the department. Champaign Fire Fighters Brian Ball, Robby Smith, Justin Kaiser, and Russ Houston, along with former cadet Tom Yu, serve as advisors for the program.
The program serves a commitment to instill positive character traits, career development, leadership and life skills to help cadets make good ethical choices to achieve their full potential. The vision of the program serves as an avenue for future recruits seeking employment within the fire service. Cadets have the opportunity to ride along on front line fire trucks, observing from a safe distance, which affords them an opportunity to get a close look at how fire fighters operate on responses.