The AR Fire Training Academy serves as a resource for the AR Fire Service and related organizations by providing professional education and training in firefighting, hazardous materials, and emergency medical services. This education and training employs the practices and standards established by state and national authorities as well as state-of-the-art techniques of fire service management through equipment and safety training.

The AR Fire Training Academy is accredited by the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC) and the National Board on Fire Service Professional Qualifications (NPQS or Pro-Board) to certify personnel to the Firefighter I, Firefighter II, Driver/Operator, Hazardous Materials-Awareness, Hazardous Materials-Operations, Instructor I and Fire Officer I & II levels. It is also accredited by the AR Department of Health to certify personnel to the Emergency Medical Technician Basic Level.

Mission Statement

The mission of the AR Fire Academy is to provide quality training to the AR Fire Service in an effective and efficient manner. The Academy is committed to providing quality training programs to fire service personnel throughout the state using various technologies and methodologies to meet the needs of the fire service. The Academy is also committed to certifying fire service personnel throughout the state who meet the certification requirements of the applicable National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Professional Qualification for Fire Service Personnel. In addition, the Academy shall support fire departments by maintaining the state’s National Fire Incident Reporting System thereby allowing participating departments to become eligible to receive specific federal grants. Within its resources, the Academy will accomplish its mission by offering on-campus training and certification services and off-campus training and certification services by direct deliveries, regional deliveries, and alternative delivery methodologies through support services.


Formal firefighter training in AR has a fifty to sixty year history. In the early forties, fire training was conducted through the AR Fire College, and with no home base, the instructors traveled AR providing training for the state's firefighters.

The AR Fire Training Academy was formally established in 1967 as a training division of Southwest Technical Institute (later to be known as Southern AR University Tech or SAU Tech). The offices and training site were located on SAU Tech's campus in the Highland Industrial park which is the former site of the Shumaker US Navel Ammunition Depot. The administrative offices for the AR Fire Training Academy (AFTA) were located in the former fire station for the US Naval base. The location served as the AFTA administrative offices, primary classrooms, and central training location until Phase I construction of the off-campus training site was completed in 1973. In June 2004, the administrative offices for the AFTA were moved out to the main site located within the Highland Park area. After damage by a tornado in 2009, the site was rebuilt to include a model fire station that provides "real world simulation training" for rookie firefighters.

AFTA Bookstore

The AFTA Bookstore is located within the SAU Tech Bookstore. The Bookstore provides textbooks and study materials for firefighters and emergency care personnel throughout the State of Arkansas.

Bookstore hours of operation are:
Monday-Thursday from 8:00am-5:00pm
Friday from 8:00am-11:30am

Orders may be made by mail or phone by calling the SAU Tech Bookstore at 870-574-4595. Fire Departments and Cities may charge the materials but individuals are on a cash only basis.

The following materials are available:

  • IFSTA Manuals and Products
  • Fire Protection Publications
  • Emergency Care and First Responder Manuals
  • Fire Attack and Silent War Manuals
  • American Heart Association CPR Materials
  • Essentials 4th edition
  • Pumping Apparatus Driver/Operator
  • Fire and Emergency Service Instructor
  • Fire Dept. Company Officer


Firemail is a service provided by the Arkansas Fire Training Academy to improve our communications with our customers state-wide and to help them communicate with each other.

To put information out on FireMail or to be added to our email address lists, you may contact Sarah Hixon:
Call: 870-574-1521 X 107
Fax: 870-574-0817
E-mail: shixson@sautech.edu
or firemail@sautech.edu

When contacting us by email, please ensure your name (or "handle") appears in the "From:" area and you have a subject in the "Subject:" area. With all the different types of computer viruses floating around in cyberspace, we try very diligently to avoid passing along these viruses to others. E-mails that are received from unidentified sources or with unknown subjects are automatically deleted by our Public Information personnel to avoid the risk of infection.