Thread: IL or WA

  1. #1
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Feb 2011

    Default IL or WA

    I'm in the military right now but when I get out I want to pursue a career as a Paramedic/Firefighter. I was wondering which state had better employment and schools. I plan on getting my EMT-B before I get out in Jacksonville, North Carolina. I'm originally from Hillside, IL but willing to get into a fire house anywhere in the state. On the other hand I was also stationed in Everett, Wa and really enjoyed living there. Which state would you recommend?

  2. #2
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Atlanta, GA


    I lived in Illinois all my life in the southern end of the state. Departments around St Louis Metro area including Missouri departments are very good and well trained. My advice for testing is to test anywhere you can. I took a job offer in Atlanta GA area. Test anywhere you can and with military and/or paramedic licenses you shouldnt have any issues. Good luck and let me know if you have any questions about St Louis area departments.

  3. #3
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Sep 2005


    I work in WA, have trained in GA, and grew up in IL.

    I've heard IL is very paramedic preferential, maybe someone else can confirm. Lots more schooling to make yourself competitive. Chicago tested a few years ago; I've heard they only test every 10 or so.

    Lots of larger departments in the metro Atlanta area (Atlanta, Cobb County, Gwinnett County, DeKalb County, etc.). The guys I spent time around in GA were really tuned on. Definitely some pride in the profession down there.

    Washington state is a great place to work. There are some great things happening on the pride and professionalism end up here; there is a growing renaissance in the return to focus on good solid firemanship and training, and more importantly - brotherhood. An EMT-B will be enough to apply to most departments.

    Not that it matters a whole lot - but the schedule(s) and pay are comparatively much better here than IL and GA, probably the best in the nation. Something to consider if you have a family to take care of.

    The schools out here good. Hiring is bleak right now - but it is starting to improve. Almost all of the departments out here have been able to weather the financial storm. I only know one or two who have laid people off.
    Last edited by powerhourcoug; 02-28-2011 at 07:58 PM.

  4. #4
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Feb 2009


    Correct in saying that illinois is very paramedic heavy. Every so often youll see a department here or there hiring that only requires emt-b but to really have a chance it seems like you need your emt-p.

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