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  1. #1
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    Question Paramedic vs. 4-year degree

    I am currently working on a B.S. in Business Mgmt but I am debating putting off the degree to go to paramedic school. As far as promotions, which will be more appealing? Any input would be greatly appreciated.


  2. #2
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    Well some departments won't hire you without a medic licenses and some departments won't hire you without a degree.

    Promotion wise....why not get both. Neither will get you a promotion, but both can make you a candidate for a promotion slot. Mind you, when getting hired you're probably looking at a period of probably in the neighborhood of 5-10 years before your first promotion.

  3. #3
    FossilMedic
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    Getting hired - paramedic certification

    Getting promoted - business degree

    Click here:

    http://www.nvcc.edu/home/mward/hmtl%...%20PROCESS.htm

  4. #4
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    How far along are you in your current program, and how much momentum will you lose if you take time off?

    Are you currently eligible for medic school, or do you still need to acquire EMT experience? That can be done while you attend college; then, if the timing works out, the medic training program may only set your college graduation date back by one semester - two at the most.

    Either choice will ultimately be good to have. I completed my degree while taking my EMT class, then it was on to the Fire Tech classes and the Academy. I believe that my BA was a major determining factor in getting hired at a major Southern California Fire Dept.

    My personal opinion is that it is not worth throwing away a shot at finishing a 4 year degree to attend 6 months of medic school.



    Chris

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    I'd agree with Chris. The medic license isn't really all that hard to obtain. Finish your degree and then go after your medic license.

  6. #6
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    I am working on my paramedic license right now, and I have a degree in Business Administration and Marketing. In order to get into the Fire/EMS world you really need that paramedic license. Don't give up on the degree, but in order to start you have to get the medic license. Don't give up, it is tough espically when you have the degree, because it is not going to get you a job if you dont have the licensure of paramedic. Try and do both, just dont spread yourself too thin. Good luck, it is nice to see that someone else is having the same issuse that I am going through but you can do it. If you have any advice for me let me know.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrism8922
    How far along are you in your current program, and how much momentum will you lose if you take time off?

    Are you currently eligible for medic school, or do you still need to acquire EMT experience? That can be done while you attend college; then, if the timing works out, the medic training program may only set your college graduation date back by one semester - two at the most.

    Either choice will ultimately be good to have. I completed my degree while taking my EMT class, then it was on to the Fire Tech classes and the Academy. I believe that my BA was a major determining factor in getting hired at a major Southern California Fire Dept.

    My personal opinion is that it is not worth throwing away a shot at finishing a 4 year degree to attend 6 months of medic school.



    Chris
    6 months? I wish that was how long it is.... try two years

  8. #8
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    Midnightmedic,
    All of the paramedic schools in California are 6 months. Heck, it may be worth relocating here to save 18 months. Since everyone is National Registry it probably wouldn't be too hard to get certified back in your hometown. Just a thought.

    For the record, I agree with those who stated that you should finish your education before worrying about Paramedic school. It will pay monumental dividends down the road.

    While it MAY be easier to get hired with a medic license, over the term of a 30-year career having a degree is much more advantageous.

    Paul Lepore
    Battalion Chief
    www.aspiringfirefighters.com

  9. #9
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    Another aspect to look at, if you're well into your degree program, is that at many colleges, if you take a either a year or semester off (with the summer semester being an exception) (depending on your school's regulations) and they change the requrements for your degree program, when you come back you will have to pick up the new requirements. If you go continioulsy, you only have to obtain the courses required when you origionally enrolled.
    Service is the rent you pay for having space on earth.

  10. #10
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    First of all, the first question you must ask yourself is "do I want to be a paramedic and provide quality, sound, compasionate patient care, or do I need a medic card to get that coveted municipal fire job?". If you answer the second option, then you seriously need to rethink things. In my area there are many people who don't want to be paramedics, that are. There patient care is poor, and all they do is complain. The reality is that EMS is a bulk of the call volume, and you need to realize this. If you want to become a paramedic, I wish you the best of luck. You may also want to check with some of the area medic programs and you university, as it may count as college credit.

    Cheers

    PS: a medic card is a certificate, not a license.

  11. #11
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    PS: a medic card is a certificate, not a license.


    My Tennessee Medic Card is a LICENSE, not a cert.

  12. #12
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    California is also a license, not a cert>

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    Ok, I stand corrected. But if it is a TRUE license, can you practice without a medical director?

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    No, but niether can a nurse

  15. #15
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    Cool

    In most states a nurse (R.N.) has a licence to practice within a limited scope, i.e. school nurses, home health nurses. Nurses don't have medical directors so much as their licence allows them to carry our a doctors orders. Nurses in many facilities report to the Director of Nursing not an MD/DO... but that has nothing to do with BCFR125 originol question.

    To the origional topic. You should finish your degree so you do not have to change course catolouge years. This doesn't mean you should not be working on EMS in the background. Join a volunteer department or sign up to be a third rider and document your time. Showing a hiring board you have some experience outside of the academy and EMT-P program, and that you were able to balance finishing your degree with firefighting will go a long way. Besides a good Vol. Fire Dept. may provide classes and certifications free of charge. Within my first year in a VFD I had my Fire 2, Haz-Ops, Wildland Red Card, Whitewater/Technical Rescue Certs. Yet more knocks in the post. Life experience is what the hiring board wants to see. A degree shows you can set a major goal and acheive it.

    Best of Luck in whatever you decide,
    Eric

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    Please forgive my spelling it is early and I forgot to check it.

  17. #17
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    i'm currently in my last year of earning my b.s in fire protection and safety engineering from oklahoma state university. this is just my opinion so take it for what it's worth. all i want to do is get in a station and fight fire, run calls, join a rescue team and what not. but i realize i wanted a degree even though i hate school (formal non career oriented education is a better term) but i know the degree (no matter what it is) will EVENTUALLY help me, which is why i will in the long run earn a masters in Public administration. what has been explained to me by a lot of chiefs in departments is that the education no matter what the degree is, shows them that you went further than some others and you had the discipline to do what is not required by a large majority of departments, above and beyond i guess. it's the same principle as getting the medic license when you are only required to be a basic or fire fighter 2 when all you need is 1. doing more than expected. also another thought that crossed my mind, it's harder to get a degree while working shift, it can be done and has been done by lots of people, but it is more of a challenge. i personally can go to paramedic school, fire academies and all that after school. but now i need to get my degree so i can show during my interviews that i was focused on my degree to better myself and the organization i will someday work for, then i can say the same when i earn my paramedic license, and what not. not sure if it helps, but it's an opinion from a person who has had the same delimma

    i also figured i will be a fire fighter till i can't physically do it anymore. so why not get the degree and have the experience of college now. i also had a lot of life lessons in my college years that i'm not sure i would of had otherwise.

  18. #18
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    EMT-P - is certainly not anything like a BS- please- and the boys with the degrees will always get the edge. My BS took one hell of a lot more money, time, brains, and effort than any emt-p program - and I have done that too in addition to my MPH and JD.

  19. #19
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    Stay in school and get your degree finished unless there is some sort of age restrictions for getting hired. I chose not to finish my degree to go get my Medic card and have had a hard time getting back to school to finish the degree. Good Luck

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