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    You are only 19. First priority, GET YOUR DEGREE then after you are done pursue your goal to be a paid career firefighter/medic. If you have a degree it will take you places and open a lot more doors for you. A fire dept I am going to test at this fall offers credits for military and credits if you have a college degree. I have neither so I am already at a disadvantage.

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    GET YOUR DEGREE! Preferably a Bachelors. AA's are a dime a dozen today.

    A Fire Science degree (I have one) will not necessarioy help you get a job. It should, however, help you when it comes to promotions and what you do when you retire. Any degree will show an interviewer that you had the maturity, perserverance and intelligence to stick with college and had some direction in your life. Even if your degree was in Greek Mythology, you will come out of college a better, more mature person.

    Consider this...you are getting ready for the physical test. You are in the best shape of your life. While running, you step in a hole and blow your knee. It would be nice to have that Plan B to fall back on.

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    I am 22 years old and as of now my plans are to finish up and get my medic card (currently hold my EMT-B and FF I&II cards) and work for a career dept for a few years and then get started back to school again to get my RN cert and if everything goes as I want I want to get a Bachelors in either nursing or business.

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    Quote Originally Posted by trailboss2
    I am 22 years old and as of now my plans are to finish up and get my medic card (currently hold my EMT-B and FF I&II cards) and work for a career dept for a few years and then get started back to school again to get my RN cert and if everything goes as I want I want to get a Bachelors in either nursing or business.
    I'm confused...

    1. You gave someone advice to finish their degree, and then you post and say that are NOT finishing up your degree in order to "work for a career dept." Tell me you do not see the contradiction here.

    2. What do you plan on doing while you are waiting to "work for a career dept."? You might be able to get in a whole lot of nursing courses.

    BTW, with a nursing degree, you will always be guaranteed a job and will make (if you want to) a ton of money. You will also be able to work around your FD shifts if you get on. With a degree in business, you stand a good chance of selling cell phones at the mall.

    Get the nursing degree.

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    I was told nurse anestiologist is great for money and emergency nursing. Go crazy become a flight nurse! I am not gonna be going into nursing at this point but who knows. There is an insane amount of money it, CRAZY AMOUNTS and everywhere is hiring.

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    Post Slow Down, Kid!

    You guys have the world by the B@#s so bad and you don't even know it. Take your time, get a degree in something you LOVE, and then worry about being a firefighter. Sit down right now, take out a piece of paper, and write down your life goals. Write down everything that you want to do, see, experience. Then set about with a plan to do it ALL! Write down 6-month, 1-year, 5-year, and 10-year plans. As my father once told me, "You'll be working the rest of your life. Enjoy this time now." Ask any of these firefighters what drives them as they get older, and I guarantee it falls back on faith, family, friends, and then the fire department. (Jeff Bowman, formaer San Diego chief, calls that the 4 F's) As a guy who got an aewsome job right out of college (by the grace of God), I recommend that you take your time. Enjoy life while achieving goals. Just my 2 cents.

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    As a young firefighter hoping to make this a career you are in a very similar situation as myself. I got to college and had no idea what I wanted to do, just that I didnt want to sit in a desk. Well first year went buy and after talking to alot of people it became aparent that firefighting was the career for me. My only problem was that I was in a school that offered nothing in the way of fire or ems. So worried that im wasting my time in college, I talked to alot of the guys I knew in the fire service and asked what I should do. Guess what they told me? From chiefs on down "stay in school, and get your degree!" Does it matter what its in? Not really. Any BA will put me ahead of the game.

    One thing I am doing though is getting on a volunteer dept and getting watever training a certs I can during summers. This summer(fr/so yr) Im getting EMT-B and FF1A. Hopefully by the time I graduate I can have FF1/2, EMT-I and a few other little certs, as well as a BA in Business/Econ.

    Like I said if you can afford to go to college and get a BA, do it. As for what degree, study what you are interested in. Some degree's are better than others, but anything is going to put you ahead of the game. Business related degree's are great, because alot of dept's count things like Business Admin as a related degree. But yet it doesnt pigeonhole you into the Fire service. (remember, you might not be a FF forever) Stuff hapends, and you might want something to back you up incase you get hurt and cant run inside burning buildings anymore.

    That all being said, I understand your frustration. All I want is a job where someone pays me to run into burning buildings every once and a while, so sitting in a class studying something I could care less about sucks. But wiser people than myself tell me it will be worth it in the long run.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeWendtCFI
    I'm confused...

    1. You gave someone advice to finish their degree, and then you post and say that are NOT finishing up your degree in order to "work for a career dept." Tell me you do not see the contradiction here.

    2. What do you plan on doing while you are waiting to "work for a career dept."? You might be able to get in a whole lot of nursing courses.

    BTW, with a nursing degree, you will always be guaranteed a job and will make (if you want to) a ton of money. You will also be able to work around your FD shifts if you get on. With a degree in business, you stand a good chance of selling cell phones at the mall.

    Get the nursing degree.
    1 - I am telling him to get his degree now, while he is still fresh out of high school. I wish I would have done it that way but since I already have my EMT and 240 certs I want to get started on that part of my career and more importantly I want to have my experience as a medic before I go to nursing school. I work with a lot of nurses that used to be medics and its very obvious when watching them work that they have a HUGE advantage over nurses who dont have the field experience. It gives them a whole new perspective on how the ENTIRE patient care process works from beginning to end.

    2 - Right now I am working as a EMT-B in the ER here in town. We are a medium sized community hospital with level 3 trauma capabilities, a 25 bed ER with 6 trauma bays, Cardiac Cath lab, 20 bed ICU, 3 medical floors, and the ob/labor floor. Among the benefit of having the chance to get GREAT experience in patient care I am allowed to observe most surgeries, cardiac cath procedures, including stent placements for treatments of AMI's and I get to get to use a lot of my EMT skills that i have learned. I get $3000/year for school tuition assistance as in they pay for it up front which is awesome so I dont have to pay out of my pocket and get reimbersed, they actually just GIVE me $3000 to spend on school stuff. Best of all the completely accomedate my school schedule AND I get payed more than medics do in this area (which really doesnt make a difference to me because Im not in it for the money but hey, Im not going to argue). As far as preparing for my fire career, I am testing at as many places I can so I can learn as much about the testing process as I can for future since most places require you to hold your medic card now. I live in the city so I cant volunteer anywhere as I live way outside any fire district except the city. I interviewed at a fire dept 2 weeks ago for a part time position and I am going through the background check etc. now.

    3 - The reason I am deciding between my nursing degree and business is for a few different reasons. No matter which path I take I will still get my RN. If I am burnt out on patient care, with my RN and 4 year business degree there are TONS of management jobs at hospitals that usually require some sort of business management degree or experience. My mom works at the hospital in the next county over and they recently hired a new nurse manager for the ER there. The nurse the hired transfered from another hospital and she has her CCRN, EMT-P, and a 4 year business degree. They started her at $100k/year and she got a $20k sign on bonus. I would ultimately like to work as either an ER nurse or a flight nurse either part time or contingient until I retire from FD and then maybe full time after I retire. I am only 22 though, I cant even believe I typed the word "retire" lol.

    I really wish I would have went straight to college out of high school but in a way I am glad I didnt. I really think that having experience as a medic will benefit me greatly in my future career in nursing. Right now my first priority is taking any steps I possibly can to help me get started in the fire service which right now I am giving everything I have to get on the the dept I interviewed for. I think I have done really well with their whole process so far and I cant wait to dedicate all of the manpower I have to help the fire dept, the hospital I work at, and my education.
    Last edited by trailboss2; 07-13-2006 at 04:46 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by trailboss2
    1 - I am telling him to get his degree now, while he is still fresh out of high school. I wish I would have done it that way but since I already have my EMT and 240 certs I want to get started on that part of my career and more importantly I want to have my experience as a medic before I go to nursing school. I work with a lot of nurses that used to be medics and its very obvious when watching them work that they have a HUGE advantage over nurses who dont have the field experience. It gives them a whole new perspective on how the ENTIRE patient care process works from beginning to end.

    2 - Right now I am working as a EMT-B in the ER here in town. We are a medium sized community hospital with level 3 trauma capabilities, a 25 bed ER with 6 trauma bays, Cardiac Cath lab, 20 bed ICU, 3 medical floors, and the ob/labor floor. Among the benefit of having the chance to get GREAT experience in patient care I am allowed to observe most surgeries, cardiac cath procedures, including stent placements for treatments of AMI's and I get to get to use a lot of my EMT skills that i have learned. I get $3000/year for school tuition assistance as in they pay for it up front which is awesome so I dont have to pay out of my pocket and get reimbersed, they actually just GIVE me $3000 to spend on school stuff. Best of all the completely accomedate my school schedule AND I get payed more than medics do in this area (which really doesnt make a difference to me because Im not in it for the money but hey, Im not going to argue). As far as preparing for my fire career, I am testing at as many places I can so I can learn as much about the testing process as I can for future since most places require you to hold your medic card now. I live in the city so I cant volunteer anywhere as I live way outside any fire district except the city. I interviewed at a fire dept 2 weeks ago for a part time position and I am going through the background check etc. now.

    3 - The reason I am deciding between my nursing degree and business is for a few different reasons. No matter which path I take I will still get my RN. If I am burnt out on patient care, with my RN and 4 year business degree there are TONS of management jobs at hospitals that usually require some sort of business management degree or experience. My mom works at the hospital in the next county over and they recently hired a new nurse manager for the ER there. The nurse the hired transfered from another hospital and she has her CCRN, EMT-P, and a 4 year business degree. They started her at $100k/year and she got a $20k sign on bonus. I would ultimately like to work as either an ER nurse or a flight nurse either part time or contingient until I retire from FD and then maybe full time after I retire. I am only 22 though, I cant even believe I typed the word "retire" lol.

    I really wish I would have went straight to college out of high school but in a way I am glad I didnt. I really think that having experience as a medic will benefit me greatly in my future career in nursing. Right now my first priority is taking any steps I possibly can to help me get started in the fire service which right now I am giving everything I have to get on the the dept I interviewed for. I think I have done really well with their whole process so far and I cant wait to dedicate all of the manpower I have to help the fire dept, the hospital I work at, and my education.
    1. You're 22
    2. You're 22
    3. You're 22

    BTW, you're only 22. Just go back and get your damn degree. Five years from now you will thank me that you did.

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