CFAES Give Today

School of Environment and Natural Resources


Director's Note June 2021

June 9, 2021
SENR Director's Note for June 2021 (Kottman Hall in the background)
Read the latest School of Environment and Natural Resources Director's Note to alumni and friends.




Prescribed Burn at Ohio State Lima. Photo credit: Roger Williams

June 2021

Dear Alumni and Friends,

During this last academic year, while much of our curriculum was on-line, we did prioritize delivering labs and field based courses in person as best we could.  One of the most interesting field experiences of spring semester was a controlled burn conducted by ENR students, guided by professor Roger Williams.  The activity got some nice local press, including this TV news piece and this article from the local paper.

Our students are able to participate in controlled burn activities due to one of our most unique offerings at Ohio State that very few other institutions offer, an autumn semester two course sequence in fire ecology that culminates with a prescribed burn and the possibility of qualifying for an Incident Qualification Card, also known as a Red Card.  The Red Card qualifies the students to suppress wildland fires under close supervision.  To qualify for the Red Card, students review the Federal S-130 Firefighter Training, S-190 Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior, L-180 Human Factors in the Wildland Fire Service, I-100 Introduction to Incident Command System and IS-700 National Incident Management System (NIMS) instructional materials pertaining to basic wildland fire training, and students who take the Wildland Fire Management Laboratory (ENR 3335.02) will also participate in a prescribed burn (often occurring on the Ohio State Marion campus) and the fitness test (that includes walking three miles within 45 minutes while carrying a 45 pound backpack).

Because of this educational opportunity that allows for Red Card certification, SENR students and graduates are well prepared to head west and work with various agencies, utilities, and tree service companies to work on wildfire management issues.  A big thanks to Roger Williams for his leadership over the years in helping make this training possible at Ohio State. 

Share Your Experience

If you’ve put your Red Card certification to good use or if it has opened some doors for you, we’d love to hear more about your story.  Offering these unique field experiences is a point of pride for SENR and learning of the impacts of these offerings helps motivate us to continue prioritizing their delivery.

Share Your Story

Prescribed burn at Ohio State Lima. Photo credit Pamela Joseph

Jeff Sharp
School of Environment and Natural Resources
The Ohio State University