Illinois Fire Service Institute


Outreach and Giving Programs

Meeting New Challenges

Firefighters and other first responders face rapidly changing challenges in their work for the public. Today's firefighters must quickly adapt to new equipment, new technologies and other advancements in the science of fire fighting. They're also being called upon to deal with a host of unconventional hazards and rescue situations.

This new working environment demands intensive and continuous training. Dealing with acts of terrorism is a new frontier that requires instruction in many specialized techniques, including those for responding to collapsed buildings. Advancing automobile technologies have necessitated changes in the methods used to extricate victims from autos. Firefighters continue to be exposed to new hazardous materials that require special handling skills.

To prepare for all these responsibilities, firefighters need practical, hands-on instruction in settings that replicate real-life situations. Hands-on training is the signature of IFSI, and it's a commitment that requires extensive resources. We also have a critical need for conducting more research on the best ways to employ new technologies and protect first responders and the public.

Your help is critical

You can play an important role in delivering this essential training. The Illinois Fire Service Institute has established special funds to allow Illinois Fire Service Institute Alumni and other donors to provide unrestricted support that will help the Institute provide this innovative instruction and service.

The development of specialized courses and additional hands-on training facilities will require far more resources than are currently available. Training through the Institute has been traditionally supported by the Fire Prevention Fund, not with the University of Illinois general funds, nor the state's General Revenue dollars. Other funding comes from student fees, grants and gifts. Our ability to respond to all of the new fire service challenges will depend on supporters like you.

Opportunities to Help:

 Giving to IFSI - Four Ways to Give Brochure


The IFSI Fund is a general use fund which allows the Institute to provide and enhance training across the full spectrum of first responder needs. Basic and advanced structure firefighting, trench rescue, vehicle/machinery rescue, confined space rescue, collapse building rescue, hazard material, rope rescue, fire investigation and other first responder training benefit from this fund. This fund also includes maintaining current training props and developing new props for first responders thus ensuring an up to date and safe training environment. Your support will help first responders continue to receive hands on experience in realistic training environments.

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Firefighter Life Safety Research Fund

The IFSI Research Fund is an endowment which is used to support firefighter life safety study and research. The Fund supports applied research in collaboration with other disciplines at the University of Illinois to study equipment as well as human factors that contribute to the health and safety of first responders. Your support will allow the continued research in these critical areas of study to insure everyone returns home safely.

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Ag Rescue Training Fund

The Ag Rescue Training Fund is an endowment which is used to support the various Ag Rescue courses at the Institute. The training includes grain bin rescue, fires on the farm, ag rescue techniques, anhydrous ammonia emergencies, ethanol awareness and others. These techniques are used by urban first responders as well as those in rural areas. Your support insures continued delivery of this program.

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The Learning Resource and Research Center was dedicated in 2011. The building houses a memorial hall dedicated to fallen firefighters in Illinois, the only fire science dedicated library in the State of Illinois, research laboratories, offices, meeting rooms and a fully ready emergency operation center. Your support of this facility is helping first responders while leaving a legacy for your company or family.

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Grain Bin Rescue Ops Fund

The Grain Bin Rescue Operations training program enables firefighters, other first responders and private sector rescue teams to get specific training on grain bin rescues. Contributions to the fund pay for the delivery of 40-hour classes delivered on weekends throughout Illinois to accommodate the schedules of volunteer firefighters and others who cannot afford to be away from home during the week.

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Illini Emergency Medical Services Fund

Illini Emergency Medical Services (IEMS) is the student-led EMS program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. IEMS functions to have a safer campus by providing volunteer EMT-Level responders for over 250 campus events and activities each academic year. Donations to the IEMS fund will be used to improve emergency response equipment, offset the costs of EMT-Basic and other training, and expand IEMS's response capabilities.

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