1. #1
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jul 2008

    Default Transition and Education Questions

    Hello all, I've posted on here a few times before but I don't think I had my head on straight when I did so. At the risk of sounding formulaic, I have always loved fire trucks, etc., and I recently made the determination for my end career goal to become a firefighter.

    I have a BA in English and I am currently working at a residential treatment facility in Louisville, KY. My plan is to get into an EMT-B class at the end of this year or at the start of the next, with the end result hopefully being hired by the municipal EMS organization. I have also been looking into getting involved in a local volunteer fire department.

    Perhaps it's because I got bitten hard by the economy (I was stuck looking for a job for six months), I am very interested in getting education in something more field-specific and applicable than English. Eastern Kentucky University is an hour and a half away, and I have been looking there to pick up a certificate in fire science. I understand that firefighting and EMS is one of those fields where experience counts for more than education, but I do wonder if that extra education would be worth it.

    Since I already have a Bachelors, would it be worthwhile to pursue a certificate in fire science or should I stick with hands-on experience in EMS? Any other pointers out there for me to pick up on and do? I'm well aware how competitive the field is so any advice is welcome.

  2. #2
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2009


    I would say you need to figure out your end goal

    If it is to become a paid firefighter then maybe take the classes

    It would look good on your resume , but not all departments require it or college hours

    Would say if you want to go paid find out what is required in your state to do that then get it done

  3. #3
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    Theaxemancometh's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010


    You don't appear to be a snotty nosed kid and I believe you've done your job getting a sheepskin. That said; what you're applying for is a snotty nosed kid position: A probationary Firefighter. For a probationary firefighter position, the education you have is quite commendable. What I would consider is "and" solutions instead of "or" solutions. In other words, enrolling in EMT class "AND" trying to get on as a volunteer. Work as an EMT for the local EMS provider "AND" work as a volunteer.

    If it's a full time municipal department you're shooting for, get some volunteer and EMT time under your belt "AND" be testing for a number of full time municipal departments. If Paramedic training is available to you, in this time and climate there's no better way to separate the men from the boys. Paramedic training will be a major game changer, providing you get up to speed with your ability to present yourself. I'm talking about oral interviews! Most are weighted 100%, which means paramedic school all by itself wont be a silver bullet. Don't bother going back to school for another degree. Fire science classes are ok, but everyone's gonna have those. Get EMT and/or paramedic certification. Volunteer Firefighter/EMT experience; start taking tests anywhere and everywhere; get your oral/presentation skills on and crackin'!!!

    "The Axeman"
    "Purpose, Truth and Passion Yields POWER AND DOMINION IN ACTION!!!"

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