In Marshfield, a new "School to Work" program is being developed by the city's fire and rescue department, and Relief Lieutenant Erik Jonas says all it's part of an effort to buck a national trend that's seeing new recruits down by around 80-to-85% in some locations.
"The Marshfield Fire Department has recognized the need to actively recruit local people," Jonas explained. "So basically we're trying to build a program in which we can pull potential candidates from central Wisconsin. This problem that the fire department is seeing with the lack of applicants is not specific to the Marshfield Fire Department. It's regional and national in scope."
Marshfield Fire and Rescue already has a fire safety and CPR outreach program in place for grade and middle schools; but now the goal is to reach high school students with the new career program.