New here and need some advice.
Been lurking for a little while and have enjoyed this site. I do need some helpful advice continuing my career to become a full time FF.
I am 37 years old now, divorced father of 2. I have 2 years Fire Science but still dont have my AA Degree in FS. Was also a PCF for Merced County for a little while back in early 2000s. Well I got married and got into a family towing business. Each day that passes I can not believe I gave up on my dream to become a full time FF. My current business was going really well but there is just no future in it, no retirement, zero benifits and the market has drastically changed.
So, I just got a grant that will cover my cost of school. At 37 every choice I make now is critical because time isnt on my side anymore.
I have never completed a Fire Academy and would really like to do that before getting my EMT. Do you reccomend the EMT or the Fire Academy first? Also, I am trying to apply with the City of Manteca as a reserve FF this next season and they require the EMT within 6 months after hire but require you to have your FF1 first. Seems like some stations are differant. I believe I have completed all my core classes with Fire Science and have the cert, have CPR and First Aide.
Are there any Northern or Central CA FF Stations that will send you to their own academy prior to getting hired? For instance CALFIRE? I know its seasonal but will they help get your FF1? My hopes are getting on at CALFIRE for experience and then go from there. My grant will still be available after the season is over.
Again, any advice is appreciated.