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  1. #1
    Forum Member localva's Avatar
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    Default Recruit Class - Push It or Flow?

    My friends and I have been debating the best way to finish up our Recruit Class training. I'm in a fairly large recruit class (25+) and there are some who are more vocal than others, etc. What are your opinions on how to behave and conduct yourself during Recruit School? Should you step up as much as possible? Show how good you are 100% of the time? Or, should you step back and fall into the group as a team?

    There are pros and cons to both. One thing is you don't want to come off as a "know it all" or "trying to be a lead all the time", but on the other hand you don't want to seem like you don't want to step up.

    Any thoughts on how to separate yourself from the pack without your peers looking upon you poorly?

    Thanks!


  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by localva View Post
    Show how good you are 100% of the time?

    Thanks!
    If you really are that good, they WILL notice without you having to show them.



    Quote Originally Posted by localva View Post

    One thing is you don't want to come off as a "know it all"
    You will.


    Quote Originally Posted by localva View Post
    you don't want to seem like you don't want to step up.
    If you are giving 100% into bettering your brothers and bettering your academy, this will be a non-issue. If you are giving 100% to show how good YOU are, it will become an issue. They say that the cream of the crop always rises. If you are the cream, you will rise.

    Two of the 8 obligations of the original maltese cross are to "give proof of humilty" and "be sincere and wholehearted." As a recruit you should be very aware of these things and do all you can to live up to them. If FD's all across the world have adopted the maltese cross for their logos, I'm pretty sure that aws a recruit you would want to adopt the meaning for yourself and live by it.

    Good luck to you.

  3. #3
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    During the academy, you want to step up and show yourself 100% of the time. Most students in our academy do not have jobs, our instructors are from several diferent local departments. We tell our students the academy is the bigget job interview of your life. Instructors are asked by thier own departments( or sit on the interview board) how a student acts during the academy.

  4. #4
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    I'm gonna agree with RESERVEFORNOW. Don't try ot be the one doing it all, all the time. Stepping up in recruit school, or an essentials calss, or anything, isn't about you showing how awesome you are. That just shows your instructors how much of an *** you can be nine times out of ten. Stepping up, is showing your willingness to learn, and help out your brothers and sisters to be. Working as a team is key. When you get a job after class, it's all about the team, and working well with them. You can be the most proficient recruit ever, but if you aren't a team player, you will not last on a job.

    Just do your best, help everyone else do their best, and go with the flow, without compromising yourself. Always give 100% percent into what you are doing, but don't do it to show someone else up. If you really are good, like was said, it will show. The best firefighters, are the ones that can work well with everyone, and get the job the done.

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber JohnVBFD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by localva View Post
    My friends and I have been debating the best way to finish up our Recruit Class training. I'm in a fairly large recruit class (25+) and there are some who are more vocal than others, etc. What are your opinions on how to behave and conduct yourself during Recruit School? Should you step up as much as possible? Show how good you are 100% of the time? Or, should you step back and fall into the group as a team?

    There are pros and cons to both. One thing is you don't want to come off as a "know it all" or "trying to be a lead all the time", but on the other hand you don't want to seem like you don't want to step up.

    Any thoughts on how to separate yourself from the pack without your peers looking upon you poorly?

    Thanks!

    Anyone can do almost all by himself. But a real brother and leader is the one who takes the time to go back after finishing his event during PT and push the last man through. A leader does what it takes to make those around him better to replace him.

    A recruit class much like a firehouse is only as good as the TEAM that makes it. Always remember three things, they should be a mantra:

    Leave NO man behind!
    EVERYONE goes home.
    And we will stay together Till we all go home.

  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber dday05's Avatar
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    I agree with the above posts. You can stand out like a know it all or you can stand out as the class role model by helping your fellow future firefighters out.You helping your classmates out will stand out much better then blowing through an evolution and hanging out once your done. JUST REMEMBER AFTER CLASS IS OVER THE HELPING/TEAMWORK WON'T STOP. It will continue until you retire or move on from the fire service. And no matter how well you think you know something there might be something someday that you might forget, and your fellow classmates will help you out on as well.

  7. #7
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    If you give it 100%...then that is why you got the job in the first place. It is really easy to fall into the naysayers that call you a know it all or those that don't give it all they have. Those are the ones there to collect a paycheck...those that give it all they have are the ones that truly want the job.

    Just remember...when you're on the job and on a scene...the people you are there to help expect you to give 100%...all the time.

    This job is not about us...but them!

  8. #8
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    [QUOTE=RESERVEFORNOW;770809]They say that the cream of the crop always rises. If you are the cream, you will rise.
    QUOTE]


    "They"also say that cream is not all that floats.I'm sure there's a thread or a few million about officers and Chiefs somewhere to support this think. ;
    However,this job is supposed to be about teamwork so working with your team to keep everyone together and at the same level works best for me.Just because you pick up the concepts and exercises just like breathing,doesn't mean that others in your class do the same.
    If a classmate is having trouble,while you are going all out,be sure to give them a hand up and work with them if they want the help to learn how it's done.It can be as simple as asking"Hey,need a hand there?"
    Good luck with it and remember,this is basic education.Just because you sky the exam scores doesn't mean that you've learned all there is to know about firefighting.I've worked with officers with 25 years in who still sign up for as many classes as their wife and family will stand them going off for.

  9. #9
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    What to Expect From A Fire Academy

    The following was written by an anonymous rookie firefighter shortly after being hired by a major Southern California fire department.


    I recently graduated from a tower this past spring/summer where 50 started but only 30 graduated. This is almost a 50% failure rate. I can only share my experiences of what I saw. If you talk to other people, they may have keyed into different things.

    Poor Attitude:

    1. Igmrís (I got mine) Ė if you have this mind set the instructors will quickly identify you as someone who is not a team player.


    2. Be a listener, not a teacher. If you know something, share it with your classmates during lunchtime. Donít suggest something to an instructor about a trick you learned as a fire explorer or as a firefighter from another fire department. Remember, you are trying to pass the tests (manipulative and academic) the ďtowerĒ way, not the ďfieldĒ way.


    3. Keep your ears open and your mouth shut. Only chitchat with your buddies at lunchtime. Donít join into conversations that shouldnít be going on in the first place.


    4. Donít talk badly about your instructors or your fellow cadets.


    5. Donít make excuses. If you screw up, donít apologize; just move on. Most importantly donít make the same mistake twice.


    6. Donít go out with your buddies on weekends to ďtake a break,Ē because thatís how people get into trouble. DUIís, fights and public intoxication are a sure way to get dismissed from the academy.


    7. Do not brown nose your instructor. They are not your friends, nor will they ever want to be. Show respect and you will do fine.


    8. Remember you are there for a badge, not to gain friends. Keep the non-essential talk for after you leave the drill tower grounds.

    9. Support your fellow cadets as much as you would want to be supported. You will not make it through without their help and vice versa.

    Physical conditioning

    The first 3 weeks were the most difficult. It appeared they wanted to weed out the weaker candidates. We had 13 people quit in the first week and a half, many of these in the first two days.
    The physical agility test is not even close to the exertion you will go through in the tower. If you barely pass the agility test, you are in trouble. Each day you will go home sore, bruised and strained. Due to the fast pace, your body does not have a chance to recover from one day to the next. The better your physical condition, the greater the chance your body can adapt to the rigorous training. It is imperative to be in the best shape possible. If you arenít, you are going to get hurt.

    Mental Conditioning

    After the first 4 weeks of our 14-week academy, it started sinking in that we were going to be here for a while. Itís mentally draining. You have to stay focused or you will never make it.
    It is extremely stressful to prepare for a manipulative exam knowing that if you donít perform you will lose your job. Everyone in the academy had to perform an evolution a second time knowing that this was his or her last and final opportunity. I guarantee it will happen to anyone who enters an academy. Being able to perform under pressure is critical. Remember, you are your own worst enemy.

    Academic
    You will be exposed to information about a myriad of different topics while in the academy. You are expected to know every piece of information that has been presented. You will be tested on it weekly, sometimes daily.
    People failed out of my academy for a variety of reasons. Probably the main reason was poor physical conditioning. Even those who survived the first 10 days had physical conditioning issues. It was apparent who was struggling. When you are tired and run down, you donít think clearly. This leads to mistakes, which in turn lead to bringing attention to yourself. Ultimately, you find yourself fighting for your job.
    There are many things you can do to enhance your opportunity for success in the academy. First and foremost, maintain top physical conditioning. The better shape you are in, the better your chances of avoiding injury and making unnecessary mistakes.

    Secondly, put yourself through a fire academy at the local community college. The more familiar you are with ladders, hose and SCBAís, the better your chances of being successful in the academy.
    The academy is extremely fast-paced. Those who did not have previous experience to draw from definitely had a more difficult time. Fortunately I had been through a basic fire academy. I have to admit that the academy at the community college, although at the time seemed hard, was like a day at Disneyland compared to the fire departmentís academy.
    Learn how to study before you enter the academy. Find a place where you can sit down and get away from the world and immerse yourself in the books. Set it up beforehand; donít wait until you start the academy to figure out where you are going to study.
    Form study groups early. Take a look around and try to identify who appears to be focused on making it through. There is no doubt that there is a benefit to having someone to bounce questions off. He or she may interpret the reading material differently than you and key into something you may have misinterpreted. In addition, he or she will pick you up when you are struggling, and vice versa.
    Take fire science courses prior to entering the academy. The more background and exposure you have to the fire service, the better you will fare. Remember each night you will be assigned a ton of reading. You are physically exhausted after being on the grinder all day long. It is difficult to maintain concentration to sit and study for a written exam the next day. The more information you have before entering the academy, the easier the material is to digest in a shorter time frame.
    Completing the academy is one of the most challenging things you will ever go through. The more you can stack the deck in your favor, the better the chances of making it through. Donít take it lightly. The work is just beginning.

    Paul Lepore
    Battalion Chief
    www.aspiringfirefighters.com

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