Fire Technology

“I have no ambition in this world but one, and that is to be a fireman. The position may, in the eyes of some, appear to be a lowly one; but we who know the work which the fireman has to do believe that his is a noble calling. Our proudest moment is to save lives.” ~ Chief Edward F. Croker, FDNY


Our facility is one of the most advanced Fire training facilities among high schools in the state of North Carolina.  Each student is offered full turnout gear to train with throughout their semester.  The students receive real-world training with their own dedicated fire truck, smoke building, escape wall and entanglement tunnel, vehicle extrication drills, ladder drills, fitness training, and more.

Students put their skills to use as the participate in fire drills for local schools, arriving in their truck, sweeping the buildings, and insuring the buildings are secure.



Program Overview

The CATS Firefighting Technology program is aligned to the Firefighting I, II and III curriculum presented by the North Carolina State’s Fire Marshall’s Office.  Upon successful completion of these courses, students may qualify for their Firefighting I and II certifications.*  This program partners with local fire departments for demonstration of equipment and skills.

Informational Video



Chief Clodfelter is a graduate of South Iredell High School.  He attended Catawba Valley Community College for Auto Mechanics and was employed by Bellsouth, working on specialized equipment across North Carolina.  Soon after he transferred to the construction division for Bellsouth as a lineman and finished his career as a cable splicer.


During his employment with Bellsouth he became a volunteer fireman with Troutman Fire and Rescue.  He held the office of Assistant Chief and then as Chief of Troutman Rescue for 15 years.  He was also Chief of the NC Task Force 1 (an Urban and Search Rescue team) for seven years.

In 2004, Chief went to work as paid Engineer/ Firefighter for the City of Conover until arriving at CATS as the Fire Technology Instructor in 2011.

He has been teaching for Mitchell Community College, Catawba Valley Community College, Cleveland Community and Western Piedmont Community College part time since 1991.

He is married with two children and four grandchildren.