Hey guys, I'm so bummed.
Hey guys, first off, I really want to say thanks for reading and responding to my posts the last 4-5 months or so. It's been greatly appreciated.
As some of you may know, my wife and I moved (along with 2 little kids) up to the western part of NC about a yr and a half ago. I moved up here b/c I received a job offer in real estate development which I've been doing since graduating college in 06. Well, the builder had some financial issues and as a result, I was let go. Not soon after we moved up here, I got laid off. It really stung.
I started looking into other careers b/c I didnt want something like this to happen again. In construction, you never know what your job outlook is like in the future it seems. So I was looking into the medical / public health field, but not nursing, more like EMT and FF. The more I looked into it the more I researched, and the more and more I got obsessed. I have 2 family members either still working or since retired from a large dept in South FL. I wanted to be a part of it. Not necessarily that particular dept, but any dept in my home state of FL, specifically Central FL where I used to live. I started looking into EMT classes and fire classes, and that's when I learned that only my EMT would transfer to FL. Fire school wouldn't. So for the past yr or so I've been doing my research, talked to my wife and we decided to give it a try back in FL. She is also a FL native and wanted to stay in FL to begin with, but my job offer came about in early 2010, and we moved up here to western NC. So for the past yr, I've had it in my mind that we were moving back. I was ready to start EMT and fire school in Central FL, and hope for the best after finishing school. I've still got a family member at the large dept in South FL, if that would help, I'd love to work there and just make the drive from Central FL. No big deal.
A few days ago, my wife decided to tell me that she wants to stay in NC and not move back to FL. I was devasted, and still am. She so afraid that I won't be able to get a job after finishing EMT and fire school. I feel confident, but I know it's very competitive. I know it's probably best for our kids to stay here (less crime, better schools, etc).
If I can't move back to FL, then by all means, I want to work as an EMT/FF/Medic here in NC. I'm just so frustrated right now b/c I've had this plan and I really thought it would work out in FL. May have it taken a few yrs to get a FF job in FL, absolutely. I know how competitive it is. I may be looking at the same time frame here. Very few paid depts, and a ton of vol depts. So my chances seem to be restricted here as well.
Any advice/comments/suggestions? Thanks for reading. It's greatly appreciated.
Not to be a dick, but do you really want this career or the perks of it?
Florida has thousands of FF/EMTs/Medics going for very few jobs, you should know this being on this forum. Even when the big departments hire you'll be competing with guys who are already on the job at smaller departments looking to advance. Not saying it's impossible but if you have a family to support and had prior financial problems I wouldn't risk coming back down here with the way the state is right now.
Try looking into neighboring states such as VA, TN, GA. I know several departments are hiring in VA.
No, no offense taken. I want it as a career, not the perks.
I could make more money using my degree, but I really want to pursue FF.
I really enjoyed my EMT class WAY more than all my college courses, and I know it's what I want to pursue. I loved every part of it. I've had previous jobs where I was helping handicapped and so forth. I've also done some volunteer work and it was very fulfilling. Thanks for your thoughts, SVTxDUDE.
Do you have any idea how hard it is to get a FF job in Florida for guys who HAVE The certs, nevermind those that dont?
Yes, I'm aware. It's certainly tough. But getting my EMT and Medic, I was hoping to get some experience first, and just keep applying througout Central FL. That would have been fine. I was prepared to wait, for sure. I actually got an offer from a family member of mine to work with him, while using my EMT.
I think whatever cert's you get in other states, when you go to Florida, California and some other states, they say, nay nay nay, you have to take the complete course here or you can't get certified.
Originally Posted by Want2BAFF.
Capt, I believe you're right, FL is tough when it comes to reciprocity. EMT transfers to FL, but I'm pretty sure FF1 and FF2 do not. Unsure about medic.
If this is a career you are serious & pasionate about, let your wife know. If she supports you, she will understand. You need to talk to her and make a deal with your wife. Tell her you won't move till you have a job. Have her agree to moving once you are hired on with a dept.
I am one of those guys in FL looking for a job. I would love to stay in FL if I can. However, I am willing to move for my career. I plan to test out of state and at a few different departments. Most places don't have residency requirements till you are hired. So you can travel & test, but once hired, you would need to move.
My wife supports me 110% and has no problems with moving for my career. However, we are staying here till I have a job.
Hey man, thanks for your reply, Longshot. But having my FF1 and FF2 from another state, I'm not sure I would get hired in FL. But I'd drive down there any opportunity I've got. I would definitely do that, but I'm just not sure how much of a chance I'll have having my certs from NC (and not FL). I plan on getting FF1 and 2 and medic...
FL does pretty much require you to be a certified FL Firefighter to apply for most jobs here. I don't believe too many other states cert's will carry over. So that does make it tough.
The only real suggestion I can think of would be to take some time off work and attend an academy here in FL. Most of the full time programs are only two or three months long. I did the part time program, which was 7 months long.
I think the Ocala Fire College even has lodging. So you could come down & take your classes with them and stay on campus. Then when you were done, head back up north. The FL cert is good for 3 years, with no active job or volunteer work. So that may be something to look into.
Longshot, that's something I could look into. The 2-3 month program in Ocala. That's probably the only thing I could do. I don't believe even medic transfers to FL, so even if I get my Medic cert to become more valuable, I dont know that it would transfer to FL.
PS- if anyone likes the Asheville NC area, and it's a great area, they seem to be in short supply of medics. I dont have my medic yet obviously, so I'll pss this long... Buncombe Co EMS starts medics at $45k, which seems to be pretty good. 24 on, 48 off. Great place to live and raise a family, 4 seasons but mild winters compared to the NE.
Like Longshot said, your best bet is to do FF/Medic here, FL doesn't accept much of anything outside of FL. You could try to get reciprocity but it'll probably take longer than the time it takes to complete the courses here.
One thing to know is when you take EMT-B in Florida you get National Registry upon certification, but not for paramedic.
Man, this is tough. Even IF I can convince my wife to move back, and by doing so, I mean by getting my FL FF certs, it'd still be so tough because I wouldn't have my medic cert when applying to jobs in FL. If it wouldn't transfer, I probably wouldn't do it. So I'm limiting myself by only having my EMT and FF1 and FF2 when applying for jobs in FL. It seems like being a fire-medic is much more favorable.
Take your minimum standards here, lodge at the fire college, and get your national registry certs.
Paramedic is transferable to Florida and it is possible to challenge fire certs but it is very difficult. I was able to do both when I moved here. Paramedic took about 2 weeks and Fire Standards took 6 months because of all the paperwork required. Yor cert classes for fire have to meet the required hrs and subject matter as Floridas before you can challenge. Some FDs in Central Fl. will hire you as a single cert paramedic until you get your FF Standards. All that being said, the fire schools are turning out more firefighters than jobs in Fla. right now. Our last test had over 400 applicants for 15 positions.
p.s. It,s much easier to take your fire certs in Fla. and transfer it to another state than to transfer to Fla.
Mdresku1, out of curiosity, which dept do you work for? I saw another post where you mentioned your dept hires medics only. You may not want to say it here, can you PM me?
No problem, I work for the Villages Fire Dept. Located between Leesburg and Ocala.
If you really want this career take one step at a time and don't listen to people who discourage you. Nothing worth doing is easy. It is easy to get overwhelmed when looking at the big picture. Make a list of things you need to do and start doing them and crossing that list off. Everyone trying to get into this career is flesh and blood just like you. Hell, I am a high school dropout with no military experience and didnt even have my medic patch when I was hired not once but twice. The second time with my dream department. And let me tell you something, the rewards of helping people are what this job is all about but the perks sure don't suck either. Best of luck to you and your family. Peace.
Thanks mdresku1 and beachfire.
Kid im the guy you were looking for. The only advice i can give you after my ranting is this.. I was FULLY certified when i typed up that rant.. FF/Medic/FlightMedic so until your FULLY certified, you dont have time to be typing any of this..While your typing your competition is on rides, in clinicals and WORKING to get to where YOU want to be..
GET TO WORK. YOU CAN DO IT. We have all been there.. every single one of us has been in your seat..Remember, the best place to start is from the bottom kid. Start pushing and dont quit.
I took a lot of help from the people that offered it. Start looking at youtube.. look at what your dreaming about.. carve it out in your damn head and go after it. Period. The more people that told you why they couldnt do it (male rns in er hospitals lol) and why you SHOULDNT do it are the exact people that didnt have the heart to continue..they lost there hunger.
Youll get there because i got there kid.
Keep your head up.
Remember.. Rocky was broke running through the streets when people (out of no where) wanted to HELP him by tossing him food WHILE HE WAS RUNNING..
Nobody would have given Rocky a damn orange if he would have been walking..
Youll be suprised who comes out in your favor.
Rocky in the meat freezer,