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  1. #1
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    Mar 2006
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    Default Sponser/Applying Out of State

    I live in wisconsin at the moment. I am graduating from high school this year, but I took some fire science classes at a local tech college already. I will be taking FF1 next year and will be looking for a job at the same time. Some people talk about being sponsered where the dept. pays for everything. But why would the fire dept. hire someone without FF1 or EMT over someone with it? Also if I did get hired, what would I do on the job without certifications? Is it just part time or soemthing?

    Second... I know some departments say you need to be a resident or have FF1 in their state to apply. But many people always talk about relocating to find a job. Would I have to find where they are hiring, move there, take FF1 classes, then apply? Or is there a way that I can apply from where I am and then move if I get the job?

    Thanks... I know it's kind of long.


  2. #2
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    May 2005
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    Wisconsin
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    14

    Default

    zclark
    You have some info mixed up. I assume that you are looking for a career position as a FF. With that said as far as sponsorships go it is usually volly or POC departments that will sponsor someone through FF1 even FF2 not career depts. The POC and volly depts will sponsor you because they always need new/more people, thats why they will take you without prior training. As far as out of state jobs I have never heard of a department requiring you to be a resident to apply. Most require a residency after hire along with ability to obtain that state's certifications. What tech colleg do you live near? The reason I ask is that some offer Fire Academies that will give you FF1 & II as well as EMT-B all in one semester. I would attend an academy and apply whenever you find an opening. I also live in Wi. If you have any more ?'s let me know. Good luck!

  3. #3
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    Mar 2006
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    Default

    Thanks... I live near MATC. I was thinking of applying at New Berlin because they are hiring late July/early August. I know they switched things from volly but I'm not sure if they are POC of Career. I'm going to UWM next semester but taking FF1 at MATC on saturdays. I figure after FF1 I will have a better idea of the job to decide if I like it. If I do then I will drop out of UWM and finish up at MATC. THanks again.

  4. #4
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    Oct 2005
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    1,154

    Default

    1) "Sponsorship" varies widely across the nation.

    In my State (CT) and pretty much the region (New England) it's difficult to impossible to take Firefighter certification classes without already being a member of an career, volunteer, or industrial fire department.

    The programs at the state and regional level simply aren't open to "civilians" and rely on the student's department to provide worker's comp insurance to cover injuries, medical clearances, PPE usually including SCBA, etc.

    The largest cities often run their own recruit schools. They don't care what you had for certs if any when hired, and they don't issue certifications coming out of their schools -- that's not a knock on the quality, it's just they're not going to spend the time and money to accredit a program that is only used to produce employees they anticipate will spend an entire career with them. The certifications are primarily a tool used by smaller departments to judge that someone's training met some minimum standard.

    Smaller career departments that hire people "off the street" generally send them to the Career Recruit program at the State Fire Academy which gets them to FFII plus some other certs. A lot of the small career departments that do hire someone already certified will send them through the Career Recruit program just to bring the new hire up to a common "baseline."

    Contrast that to places like California & Florida which, from what I've seen, offer Firefighter certifications to people off the street through community college programs and many career fire departments require having certification to be hired. They also have a lot more fairly small departments hiring on a fairly regular basis, without the volunteer base seen in most of the New England outside of eastern Massachusetts.

    2) Portability of certifications

    This is a blithering mess nationwide.

    The NFPA produces the baseline standards. Some states have considerably more extensive training for the same level like FFII, but most (all?) at least meet the NFPA minimums for a given title.

    Two organizations, the International Fire Service Accrediation Congress (IFSAC) and the National Board on Fire Service Professional Qualifications (NBFSPQ a/k/a ProBoard) accredit certification programs.

    Some states use one, a few use both. Mine (CT) does both.

    A FFI cert in CT will be accepted in by another state certifying agency that uses IFSAC or the ProBoard; likewise we'll accept a cert issued by an IFSAC or ProBoard participant. The "catch" is you usually have to send your $20 or whatever it is to register your certification with each of the national organizations.

    There are a number of states that do not participate in these programs. Some may evaluate your training on a case-by-case basis; others will be "Sorry Charlie. We don't care you completed NFPA 1001 compliant Firefighter I training there, here's our application for an NFPA 1001 compliant Firefighter I class..."

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