To actually do some research on when a fire department will be next accepting applications, where do you start? I believe you should do an all encompassing approach that will include using the internet, calling up the fire department headquarters, calling up the city personnel department, stopping by a fire station, and stopping by the City Hall (or other similar administrative offices of the municipality, county, state, or federal agency you are applying for).
In the last article, Phase 2: Organizing your firefighter candidate research binder into chapters, I discussed how to organize your binder into a user-friendly tool that will greatly assist you in finding out which fire departments are accepting applications.
I provided a sample template to use that contained information on a fire department that I felt will be very relevant and useful in performing your research. You probably saw that template and asked yourself, "How am I going to obtain all of the necessary information?" Obtaining that information will be the focus of this article. Think of yourself as a detective trying to piece together a crime. Instead, you will be piecing together the pieces that will complete the puzzle of pursuing your dream of becoming a firefighter!
I. OBTAINING THE NECESSARY INFORMATION FOR YOUR FIREFIGHTER CANDIDATE RESEARCH BINDER.
If you are thinking that you are getting in over your head, then sit down and take a deep breath. Rome wasn't built in a day, and odds are you are not going to become a firefighter in a day either. Patience is a virtue. All of this research you perform now is going to be valuable information that will assist you in some form or fashion. Where do we start? Now that you have this nice binder, what are you going to do with it? Hopefully use it! There are many ways you can obtain information to "fill in the blanks." Here are my top choices to assist you in the process of filling in the blanks for each of the fire departments you are planning to research (remember we are using the template I showed you in the last article, or something similar):