Inter-Tribal Council of California

Tribal Stewardship Training and Employment Program (T-STEP)


Inter-Tribal Council of California

Training Opportunities

CPR/First Aid

Wilderness First Aid and CPR is a 2-day training that focuses on hands-on scenarios in CPR, trauma, wounds, medical conditions such as heart attacks, diabetes, and strokes, and environmental issues and influences. Each individual who completes this training earns an OSHA-approved CPR card and a 16-hour wilderness first aid card.

Safety Tailgate Series: There are roughly 30-fifteen minute safety tailgate segments.

ANSI & Cal OSHA Safety & Project Manager Course: This Course covers basic ANSI Standards and Cal-OSHA requirements for forestry and tree service work. Project management skills and organizational control, organizational structure, leadership, chain of command, organizational charts, and insurance watch outs.

Saw Skills/Maintenance and Field Operations

Basic Saw Training (S212) is a 3-day course that aims to establish basic use of gas-powered chainsaw skills by following the National Wildfire Corporation Group (NWCG) S212 curriculum and focusing on on-the-job style training. The curriculum includes chainsaw familiarization and maintenance, the use of safety equipment and tools, bucking, limbing, and slashing techniques, and some basic felling. Each individual who completes this course to standard earns an industry-recognized 24-hour Basic Saw Operation Training certificate. 

Intermediate/Advanced Saw Training is for sawyers who have completed S212 and exhibit the ability to progress to the next level of training falling trees. This is a 3-day course, with 4 hours of review in the classroom featuring videos and dry-erase board discussions, and 20 hours working in the field that builds skills in tree-felling procedures, safety, and issues that may occur on the job such as heavy leans, hang-ups, and spring poles. Before deployment to the in-field portion of this training, a gear check will be performed to ensure each participant has the appropriate safety equipment and tools required. Each individual who completes this training to satisfaction earns an industry-recognized certification. 

 Basic Saw S212 is a 1-2 day refresher course (dependent on class group size)

Advanced felling & Introduction to Ropes and Technical Rigging: Advanced cuts and techniques explained, taught, and demonstrated by training staff using advanced methods to safely cut, as a small 3-man crew. Demonstration of ropes, rigging and associated gear, hydraulic jacks and advanced cutting methods used by professional tree service providers. 

(*certificate will be valid for 1 YEAR! *please note this course requires annual re-certification for crews)

Intro to Tree climbing and Technical Approach Course covers safety culture, basic knots, gear, ropes, rigging, slings, pole pruners, working in the utility environment and residential applications. 

(*certificate will be valid for 1 YEAR! *please note this course requires annual re-certification for crews)

Ropes, Rigging, and Mechanical Advantage

SAIL! FORESTRY TO PROVIDE. Training provides the different types of uses of ropes, equipment, and riggings to fall a tree. This training also goes over what to look for in the trees, this will determine how to rope and rig up the tree to fall it in the safest way possible.

Fire Suppression/Prescribed Fire/Cultural Burning

Basic 32 Wildland Firefighter is a 5-day course that focuses on basic skills, safety, and techniques of wildland firefighting. The course is 4 days in the classroom and 1 day in the field. Some topics include fire behavior, approaches to firefighting, cutting fire lines, and safety. This training can qualify individuals for taking the pack test, earning their red card, cultural burning, and firefighting. All participants MUST complete FEMA 100 and FEMA 700 prior to taking this course. The satisfactory completion of Basic 32 earns each individual National Wildfire Corporation Group (NWCG) approved certificates in S-130 Firefighter Training and S-190 Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior. 

Introduction to the Incident Command System (FEMA IS-100.C) explains the principles and structure of the incident command system, the roles of the commander and command staff, and describes the National Incident Management System characteristics. This course is developed with the National Wildfire Corporation Group (NWCG), US Department of Agriculture, and the United States Fire Administration’s National Fire Programs Branch. Each individual who completes this course earns an Introduction to the Incident Command System ICS-100 certificate.  

Introduction to the National Incident Management System (FEMA IS-700.B) focuses on a collaborative approach to preventing, responding, and recovering from incidents. Topics include managing resources, NIMS management characteristics, communication, and Emergency Operation Center functions. Upon completion, each individual earns an Introduction to the National Incident Management System IS 700.B certificate. 

Other advanced courses include, Engineer, Engineer boss, Crew Boss, Burn Boss

These can take years to acquire, task books must be completed by authorized fire personnel. A  Pilot program is being developed to include these.  

Heavy Equipment Logging Operation and Maintenance- Shasta College

The Shasta College Heavy Equipment Logging Operations (HELO) Program is a one-of-a-kind effort to increase workforce capacity in areas of fuels reduction, mechanized logging, and sustainable forest management. The HELO program is funded by California Climate Investments and administered by the CAL FIRE Forest Health grant program in collaboration with public agencies, private industry, and employer partners. Individuals who complete this program will receive a certificate in heavy equipment operation and will be prepared to enter a meaningful career in forestry. The accelerated structure of the program allows for a shorter time commitment to completion, 324 hours of in-the-field training and practice, and a general background in natural resources and heavy equipment operation, safety, and small repairs. 


Similar to Cultural Burning above, there are myriad practitioners across the California landscape.  Most tribes have one or more ITEK experts and practitioners. The best training scenarios (and most culturally appropriate) employ practitioners to pass on knowledge to fellow tribal members and work crews. This knowledge is highly specific to individual tribes and locations. While some ITEK principles are universal, their application is most often unique to ancestral homelands and tribe. 


Highly customizable training that is tailored to the needs and interests of tribal members.

Other Training Possibilities

  • Traditional Ecological Knowledge
  • Tree Marking
  • Forest Crew Management and Administration
  • Cone Collection
  • Trail Building and Maintenance
  • GIS and Mapping
  • Powerline safety
  • Small Engine Repair and Maintenance
  • Grant Writing workshop