Thread: Where to start

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    Default Where to start

    I'm in the Navy and am planning on becoming a paramedic/firefighter once I get out. I'm from Hillside, IL but willing to go to any school in IL. I've also been stationed in Everett, Wa before and really enjoyed it. I'm trying to figure out the best way to go about it. I'm getting my EMT-B as soon as I come back from deployment. I'm stationed in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Should I go to a school first to become a Paramedic than apply to firehouses or should I apply to firehouses right away once I get out and have my EMT-B. Or should I go to a fire academy. Money for school is not an issue because of my G.I bill and IL pays most of the schooling for Veterans but time is. Not sure if the EMT-B Cert is accepted in both states of Wa and IL. There are a lot of variables here and I was hoping somebody could give me some clarification and guidance. Your help is greatly appreciated.

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    Hey esms!

    Being in the service will definitely help getting hired. Veterans points are nice on tests. I would suggest finding departments you want to work for, and taking their tests when you're back. Get on lists, and see if you can get hired. Then, while you're waiting to be called, you can work and get your FF I/II, EMT and Paramedic courses. Maybe even join a volunteer department near you for some added experience. Also, if you don't have a degree already, maybe you should check out a local college and work towards a degree. It wouldn't hurt, will make you more marketable, and if FF/Medic doesn't work out immediately, it'll be a backup plan and open up many more opportunities for you.

    As for EMT-B being accepted in other states, I'm not sure on that. I don't have a huge background in EMS at this time, but I'm pretty sure if you get your state cert, it only counts in that state. But, after you take your EMT test for IL, you can take the national registry test, which is more thorough, but if you pass, counts as EMT in all states. Not sure how paramedic works exactly.

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    You need to check each state to see what is required just to apply

    If anything get that or those certs

    Then apply away

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    Quote Originally Posted by st42stephenAFT View Post
    Hey esms!

    Being in the service will definitely help getting hired. Veterans points are nice on tests. I would suggest finding departments you want to work for, and taking their tests when you're back. Get on lists, and see if you can get hired. Then, while you're waiting to be called, you can work and get your FF I/II, EMT and Paramedic courses. Maybe even join a volunteer department near you for some added experience. Also, if you don't have a degree already, maybe you should check out a local college and work towards a degree. It wouldn't hurt, will make you more marketable, and if FF/Medic doesn't work out immediately, it'll be a backup plan and open up many more opportunities for you.

    As for EMT-B being accepted in other states, I'm not sure on that. I don't have a huge background in EMS at this time, but I'm pretty sure if you get your state cert, it only counts in that state. But, after you take your EMT test for IL, you can take the national registry test, which is more thorough, but if you pass, counts as EMT in all states. Not sure how paramedic works exactly.

    Just to add to the EMT-B stuff, I took my EMT in IL and after the test just immediately took the national registry. No need to take the IL test the NREMT-B is accepted in IL. As for WA I do not know, but usually if they dont accept the NREMT-B you can take another test without having to retake the class, I believe.

    Good luck to ya.

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    esms, I am from the chicagoland area and I am currently testing around. I have my EMT-B and FF2. I would recommend getting your EMT-B first and start testing. While testing go to Paramedic school and do the fire academy last. A lot of places are looking for medic over FF2 it seems. I think this is due to if they hire you and you don't have your FF2 it is only 8 weeks at a full time academy over the year at paramedic school. There are some departments that only require EMT-B but why not be over prepared and be qualified for more departments. I will be starting medic school next.

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    Take advantage of online classes NOW. Enroll and take Introduction to Fire Science and one or two other classes. Your goal is to put yourself through a basic fire academy while you are earning EMT hours toward paramedic school. Most places require six months EMT time on an ambulance before being accepted into paramedic school.

    Being a seasoned EMT is important to becoming a good paramedic. Your internship will be extremely fdifficult if you are not a strong EMT.
    Once you are licensed as a paramedic, having a basic fire academy makes you more desireable to us.
    Thanks for serving our country!
    Paul Lepore
    Division Chief
    Aspiringfirefighters.com
    AspiringFireOfficers.com

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    I would see nothing wrong with applying with your EMT-B, getting some experience, and then pursuing your medic. Many departments are hurting for ALS providers, so having your medic would make you a more attractive candidate. Chief Lepore is correct regarding having strong EMT skills. Its the foundation everything builds on.
    Fire Service Interview questions - The blog that has REAL interview questions for firefighters, Engineers, Lieutenants, and Captains !

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