Update: The Pass the Torch program resumed in spring 2022. Keep an eye on this page for future application and class information. 

Questions should be sent to Melanie Liner at Fire Recruiting. For more information, call (512) 974-0292.  


The program provides participants with the opportunity to learn about the fire service and emergency medical services response in a safe, controlled, and educational environment. Participants are able to engage in real fire service activities under the guidance of experienced Austin Fire Department (AFD) firefighters. The program is designed to give individuals a glimpse into the cadet academy and a first-hand feel for a career in the fire service. 

Pass the Torch consists of various Saturday sessions and is held at the Public Safety Training Campus. At these sessions, participants are able to engage in real fire service practices and activities.

Requirements for Eligibility:

  • Must be between the ages of 18 and 35;
  • Must be able to pass a criminal background investigation;
  • Must be able to provide a current passing physical; and
  • Must go on at least one station ride out if accepted.

What you will gain:

  • Amazing memories of this once-in-a-lifetime experience;
  • Opportunity to learn from AFD firefighters;
  • A clearer sense of whether firefighting is the right career choice for you;
  • A network of peers that you can study with during our next hiring process, should you choose to apply;
  • Participation in physical training similar to what is done during an AFD Cadet Academy; and
  • Education about fire science from trained instructors.

What sort of commitment will you be making?

Sessions take place on Saturdays from 7 a.m. – 5 p.m. There will be approximately two Saturday sessions per month. Inability to attend any session must be reported ahead of time to the program manager or a team leader.

Physical expectations:

Pass the Torch applicants can expect a certain amount of physical activity during the program. But don’t be discouraged from applying if you don’t feel you’re in the best physical condition! No applicant will be excluded from this program based on their perceived fitness level.