1. #1
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    Default Good jobs (back up careers) to have while testing

    Hi guys, I have kind of a different type of career question. I was curious to see what people who haven't yet been hired do for a living, and wanted to get some ideas on what I could do. I'm currently a paid-per-shift firefighter, and for my "9-5," I work as a tech/assistant to the doctor in a busy Urgent Care facility. I love working at the Urgent Care, as I get tons of medical experience, the doctor worked in an ER for 20 years and is always training me, and they are super cool about me missing work for different fire tests. It's the perfect job in that sense, however I am just barely squeaking by financially.
    My problem is that because of my education and credentials (bachelors degree in communications, EMT-IV/EKG, most all of the fire certs), I'm not qualified for a lot of well paying "in the meantime while I test" jobs, or I get turned down because they know as soon as I get a job offer for the badge, I'm leaving. I was just turned down by 2 very well paying jobs; 1 was as an emergency comm specialist for a small city. The manager had been burned by aspiring career firefighters before who left when the received an offer, and didn't want to spend the time and money training me just to have me jet when an offer came by. Another was a flexible/well paying job in marketing for a company, but I think I messed up in the interview because when they asked where I see myself in 5 years, of course I said "sitting backwards for a local fire department." I would just greatly appreciate some new ideas. I am confident that I will get hired someday, but until that day comes, I need a "for right now" job that will be better for me financially. Thanks everyone.

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    Honestly, why tell these other jobs about your eventual career goal to be a firefighter? That might be kind of shady, but if you go around to this "middle class" jobs saying "I'll leave if/when I get a fire department job", you'll run into more of the same of what you've already had. The way I see it, you're searching for a career right now, and if a firefighter job falls in your lap, you'll take it. Treat it that way until it happens.

    While I'm testing for a career firefighter job, I'm a paramedic with a county-ran EMS service. I make decent money doing it, enjoy it, and it's my fall-back plan if I don't get hired with a fire department, mainly for the pension.

  3. #3
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    If you have medical, take a 2 year associates program and get your RN.

    In NJ, pay >$30 for new grads. When you get hired, work per diem and make >$50/hour.
    I am now a past chief and the views, opinions, and comments are mine and mine alone. I do not speak for any department or in any official capacity. Although, they would be smart to listen to me.

    "The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list."

    "When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water."

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    How about p school and becoming a flight medic?
    Last edited by Gatsby; 01-31-2012 at 07:35 PM. Reason: wrong name

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    Here's the problem. They see my resume, credentials, work history, and call my references (mostly firefighters), and they see right through it. That's why I've been trying to interview for jobs outside of EMS, because they are unaware of the process we go through and the dream they have. I've spent so much time preparing for and going through oral boards, typical business interviews for a job I want just to pay the bills are actually quite nerve racking.

    I definitely want to go to school, namely P school, but I just dont have the money to do so now. After rent, groceries, and bills are paid, the little left goes into a savings which is basically for emergencies only: car issues, if I have to take my dog to the vet, etc. I need much more financial stability before I can go back to school. Luckily, my department set up is great, as I can continue to get experience and work on my certs, but we are a small, suburban/rural department with no paramedics, so they would not pay for me to go to P school.

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    The other problem in these "business" interviews: the question "describe a stressful situation you've been in during your work experience." It probably comes off a little differently when I tell him how I had to work a 4 year old kid, or had a MCI bus accident, when some business major describes the time he didn't think he was going to get all of his TPS reports filed in time, but he did. This is where I get kind of lost in looking for what I can do in the meantime, you know?

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