Hey everyone, I have been a volunteer firefighter for almost 2 years, last year I joined as a cadet and just recently moved up to the regular department. I am planning on going to college and studying fire science, then getting a masters in fire administration. I was wondering if anyone had an advise on things I could do to help me get into a career department.
Here are two little nuggets that will be a good start. If you want to get on a big city department, learn to test well, and take as many test as possible. Make sure that you can physically pass a standard CPAT, or you're just wasting your time and money.
FF/PM is almost a must to be hired out on the west coast. Not to open up old wounds, but if your planning on getting a tattoo, don't. People of your generation are not the people who are going to hire you. If you have a particular dept. in mind, check out what their requirements are.
Credentials (FF I & II, EMT, Paramedic), a good written score and a good Physical Agility Score will get you an interview. The interview is where you really have to shine. Firm handshake for all evaluators. Remember their titles and names and use them during the interview. Confident and friendly-but not cocky. most likely you'll have at least a couple Captain level or above officers on the board. They're looking for someone a crew can have confidence in and get along with well for 24 hours. I've sat on several boards for new hires. Once you're in that room with us, we're looking for personality...can you get along well with co-workers or will you ultimately be an employee problem?...That's what we need to know. Credentials are necessary but they're just the basics. You need to convince the board you will fit in and that you are passionate about the field. Feel free to contact me if you need any other advice. Good luck, Keith