Thread: career change

  1. #1
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    Default career change

    At the age of 30 I have the opportunity to chase a dream of becoming a full time Firefighter/EMT. I am currently in class for my national EMT-B certificate and I have been a Volunteer With Tampico RFPD in Tampico, IL for over 3 yrs. I am looking for a position in the mid IL and Mid IN areas. I am also worried about my age and how much of a factor it could be. Also I am an 8 yr Veteran of the USN. Will this be helpful. If anyone can offer me some advice or information on departments that are testing I would appreciate it.

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    30... are you nuts? 30 is only old when you're 10!

    Your time in the Navy will be an asset to departments who look for discipline. You're gonna be someone who can function smoothly in a paramilitary organization. You understand command structure, AND you have fire/ems training & experience. Be sure to use ALL that you have experienced & done when interviewing/selling yourself to a prospective department. In no way do I have all the answers (CaptBob should be weighing in here shortly!). Best of luck, and welcome to Firehouse!
    ~Kevin
    Firefighter/Paramedic
    --^v--^v--^v--^v--
    Of course, that's just my opinion. I could be wrong
    Dennis Miller

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    Default 2 cents...

    Ok, here we go...

    30 is NOT old. Sometimes, the older the better. Figure out
    your platform right now...I can do it in about 15 seconds.
    Mature, stable, military, education, etc... Ok, more
    like 5 seconds. Take those attributes and work off of them.

    I high suggest you go look at Capt. Bob's website for a
    look. Even veteran FFs need interview help.

    Being in the Navy was good, BUT, please remember not
    (including me) everyone was in the Armed Forces. Much
    like having a 4 year degree, dont slam this down an oral
    board's throat or make it your only platform for trying
    to get hired.

    Start getting in the testing circuit vs. focusing on just
    a few select departments. Get your resume together. Get you
    interview techniques down. How are you going to deliever the
    "total package?" Why should I hire you over the next 500
    people? You tell me?

    The two best websites out there I have seen for candidates
    are-

    www.eatstress.com and
    www.firecareers.com
    Last edited by CALFFBOU; 11-13-2004 at 06:44 PM.

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    I was in better physical condition at 30 than when I was 18. Lance Armstrong is at peak form in his 30s. At 30 you have a much greater level of maturity than a 20 year old (which comes in handy when you're in class as a professional rather than "just" a student.

    If you want it, go after it and don't look back.
    ullrichk
    a.k.a.
    perfesser

    a ship in a harbor is safe. . . but that's not what ships are for

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    Wink Advice from an 'old guy'.

    I have been through a number of acadamies and I can say with certianty that the 30 year olds (what you are calling, 'a geezer') did much better in class than the 'young guys'. This is because the 'geezers' have been out in the world just long enough to know that chances like the FD don't come around every day and a bad day at the station beats the hell out of a good day roofing, flipping burgers, or pouring asphalt.

    Good luck! You will be fine.
    Member IACOJ - Building crust and full of lust...

    "It's okay to to scared, just don't be chicken." - Clark

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    Default thanks

    Whoah I guess I should be more careful about what I refer to or imply as old. I really appreciate the comments. I am encouraged to hear that it seems that I am in the middle of the age range as far as people that are serious about becoming FF. Thats good to know. I have come across a few websites and hiring information that lists 35 as the maximum age. So I just kind of figured that I was up there in the age dept. But thank you all for setting me straight. I guess that I can honestly say that I am feeling pretty young now. Thank goodness.
    Anyway, I guess one of the things I will need to learn is how far to go when telling the interviewers whyI am the best for the job without coming across as egocentric. I guess that will come with the experience of the interviewing process.
    Thanks again for the comments and please , I am a dry sponge, I will soak up all the advice and information anyone can give me.

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    chrnea -- Just turned 31 a week ago, and I'm on the list for FDNY. When I started the process I was 28, but, anyway -- I too am looking forward to making this major change in my life as well. I was slightly concerned about the age thing until I took the FDNY physical test. I have been working my *** off and am in the best physical shape I've ever been in. And for many of the events, I was done in half the alloted time. While I feel for any guy who got to the point of the physical test and failed, I witnessed three guys, all younger, who did exactly that - failed the physical test.

    The difference was I was so focused on it. These guys admitted to me later that they hadn't practiced, thought it would be easy, etc. and my only advice to them was, fortunately they will have another opportunity. For me, closing in on 30, this would be my only shot at this, so I had the hunger.

    In my opinion, the hunger is one of the greatest selling point guys in our age bracket have. We've been out and accomplished other things, and at this point want to chose to do this as a career.

    Just my thoughts... good luck with everything

    Jim

    martinez24@comcast.net

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    jim i have you by a year,i am 32 years old.I felt the same way when i took the fdny physical exam.I worked my *** off to get in shape because i knew it would not be as easy as when i was twenty one or twenty two.I am a veteran of the us army,that is the only reason i was eligible for this exam.I met the same type of young guys who thought the test would be easy and didnt work out for it.I am glad i took the time to get in shape for it.good luck dude#719

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    beef72 - awesome number man... you gotta be coming up soon. From the way things are going, by the time they get to 2363, I'll be 32 (actually I hope it's that soon).

    Jim

    martinez24@comcast.net

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    Default Age as a factor

    The age thing is a small factor but dont let it discourage you. It is true that some fire departments have an age requirement. The FDNY has an age requirement of 33 on date of hire for instance. However, most departments will allow you to deduct a certain amount of years off with the years you were in the military. Beef will vouch for that. Getting hired is only a matter of discipline, I am only 18yrs old but I wont play Russian Roulette with my future career. Get a test prep book bro and learn the process its a good way to become familar. Try Barrons or Arco. If you got any questions keep posting all the guys on here are good and will help you out. We are all in the same boat. Best of Luck

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