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Thread: Firefighter 1?

  1. #1
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    Default Firefighter 1?

    What does firefighter 1 consist of? I am about to take a EMT B class to become certified, and I want to get as much as I can on my resume before applying to fire departments. Can I take it without being on a fire department, or can I only get it at the academy or what? What are some other certifications can I work towards?
    Thanks for your help.


  2. #2
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    FF 1 is the basic set of skills the NFPA has established that a firefighter should know. You can usually take it without being sponsored by a department and many academies incorporate FF 1 & 2 as part of their program. Depending on the state and department, even if you already possess these certs you might have to retake them if hired, or you may not even be eligible to apply without these certs. Check into the area you are applying to find out more.

    You mentioned you want to accomplish all these certs before you apply. If you are of age, what's keeping you from applying now? You might get lucky and get hired. If you're too young to apply, get your degree now (at least a 2-yr). If you can, get into a volunteer or explorer program to get some related experience. Call and set-up a brief interview with a person in charge of hiring at a dept you'd like to work. Ask THEM what they want to see. Every dept is a little different and they'd be your most reliable source.

    Regardless, keep your background clean, your driving record clean and your credit in good standing (keep low or no balances). Those are three things that can hurt even the best candidates.

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    Im 23 and I have applied to one station but I felt like I was way behind everyone else so I am going to keep trying and take as many test as possible. I am starting from scratch and enrolled in CPR and EMTB, what other certs. or what else can I do to help my chances?

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    Remember, when you test, you'll have lots of people that have this cert and that cert but still aren't getting hired. Why aren't they? Most processes are pass/fail until you get to the oral interview, at which point your ranking is weighted 100%. If you didn't pass the written, get a good study book based upon the types of tests your area uses. If it was the Oral interview, check out Capt Bob's program (www.eatstress.com) and Chief Lepore's book (www.aspiringfirefighters.com). Both are great resources to help boost your oral interview skills. If you're #1 on the list and you have no certs, you're probably going to still get hired unless there's something in your background.

    I'd still contact one of your departments you're planning on applying to and ask them what their requirements are. FF 1 & 2 are good certs to have, but it's a long class and if the dept doesn't care, I'd pass them up for doing something else. Have you ever taken a public speaking class? That might be a good padding since we're in front of people a lot.

    Good luck!

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