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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Volly before career?

    I live in the Allentown, PA area and where I live the career guys hate the vollies. They feel as if they are stealing jobs away from the union and the career companies. So is it a bad thing to put by 4 years of volly experience on an application for a career department? I'm 20 years old, have my EMT for the past 4 years also and thinking about going to the local community college for emergency services. I also just joined a local gym and quit smoking to get more in shape before the physical test. Is there anything anyone else could suggest to get past the application / civil and physical test phase of the hiring process?

    Kyle Albrecht
    FF/EMT


  2. #2
    Forum Member kprsn1's Avatar
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    Kyle, in my opinion, if any department doesn't want to hire you because of your volunteer experience then I don't think you want to even be there do you?
    SFPD Member MABAS Division 47
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  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber KevinFFVFD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by firefighter3419 View Post
    I'm 20 years old, have my EMT for the past 4 years also and thinking about going to the local community college for emergency services.
    while i am not saying that you are not who you say you are, i am just going to ask this before someone else does....

    if you are 20 years old and you took EMT-B 4 years ago that would make you 16 years old when you became an EMT. what EMT-B school takes someone who is 16 years old and not out of High School? hey, but if you are an EMT, then congrats, i am going to EMT school this summer myself.

    here we somewhat have the same problem, but not as bad as you have it. we have a career department with about 135 firefighters surrounded by 6 volunteer fire departments. i am on the volunteer fire department that the career guys say they dont mind working with. the other departments have.......questionable leadership.
    however lucky for me, my dad, grandfather, and cousin all retired from the city career department, so i basically know every firefighter there and it is easy for me to get along with them. i joined the volunteers to basically build up experience so when i do decide to join the career department i can write down that i have so many years experience as a volunteer firefighter. my volunteer department also has 2 paramedics and two career firefighters crom the city that volunteer with us on their days off. so that also helps out alot.

    now even though for the most part we can get along with the career guys, other volunteer departments around ud seem like they are doing all they can to screw that up. let me make one point real quick before i go further....

    the county where my department is in does not have our own ambulance service. so we relly on the ALS ambulance service from the city. we also cannot do vehical extrication, confined space rescue, or high angle rescue even though we have people on our deparment who is certified in all of this. because of this we also relly on the city rescue service. we have first responders to respond to medic calls, but nothing higher than that. as i said before we have paramedics and emt's, but since we dont have medcontrol we cant use them no higher than first responders. also, we still respond an engine to MVC's but can only "assist" rescue in extrication and we are also in charge of leaks and any fire supression. so we still do get plenty of chances to work with the city.

    you should not be ashamed to tell the career department that you were a volunteer. basically, they cannot deny to hire you based on they dont like volunteer firefighters. if you do get hired just dont show your a** and intentionally try to stir things up by saying "i have experience because i was a volunteer". you will learn that once you become a career firefighter that your time as a volunteer dose not reall matter. your still going to start from the bottom and work your way up like everybody else there.

    good luck..........

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    Pennsylvania is a different animal all in itself. While taking EMT there in 1987 I had two 16 year olds in my class. I believe there was an issue of if they could actually sign reports legally but as long as their chief gave the OK they could take the class.

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber KevinFFVFD's Avatar
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    my bad then. all EMT schools here you have to be a high school grad and be at least 18. well then congrats on your EMT..........

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    My father lost his family when he was 15 in a house fire which he escaped, ever since I can remember he was a volly at the local dept. When I turned 16 I joined and found an intrest in EMS. While in high school I took my fire fighting classes and EMT-B at the same time. I lucked out (not to brag), but I had that nitch for EMS and medicine. I wanted to become a medic but the rate of pay sucks and I just frankly became burnt out. I found the love for the fire service and want to do it as a career. In PA your allowed to take the EMT class at the age of 15 but must be 16 by the test date. You also must have an EMT or medic in the back of the rig with you and are not allowed to sign your own trip sheets. We had about eight people under the age of 18 in our class.

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    Quote Originally Posted by firefighter3419 View Post
    I live in the Allentown, PA area and where I live the career guys hate the vollies. They feel as if they are stealing jobs away from the union and the career companies. So is it a bad thing to put by 4 years of volly experience on an application for a career department? I'm 20 years old, have my EMT for the past 4 years also and thinking about going to the local community college for emergency services. I also just joined a local gym and quit smoking to get more in shape before the physical test. Is there anything anyone else could suggest to get past the application / civil and physical test phase of the hiring process?

    Kyle Albrecht
    FF/EMT
    Bro,
    Why would you make a statement that the allentown fire dept. career guys hate vollies. Maybe there are some mixed feelings but I would bet alot of the guys on the job were vollies themselves somewhere. Pa. is one of the largest vollies states in the country. If not the largest. What you did in this post was speak about the allentown fire dept. career guys.I have to admit it took balls to sign your name to that post. I just hope that allentown is not the dept. your trying to get on. Don't be surprised if someone holds your name to see if you get on the job.In other words don't say stuff like the career guys hate vollies. You don't know if everyone of them do or not.
    Last edited by kingofdahill; 02-28-2007 at 08:26 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by firefighter3419 View Post
    I live in the Allentown, PA area
    I said in the area, Allentown FD is one of the few career department in the area that do use vollies. The do call vollies in to cover their stations when they have a big incident and even call them into the scene if need be, its ashame all the departments can't be like that. But also if you talk old time guys a few of them still don't care much for the volunteers. I am not degrading Allentown at all. I aplogize to the Allentown guys if that was written poorly in the original thread.

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    I live in Pa. and know what you mean with your statement. I work in a career dept. and see alot of what you are talking about. Our rescue and ems is a volley organization. I was a volley before I started and know some GREAT firefighters who are vollies. They just chose another fulltime occupation. (one that pays better). I will often tell the guys I work with not to knock the vollies (especially the guys that were vollies before career) We are the ones using them on "OUR" calls.

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    I thought Allentown was the ONLY career department in that area. Then again, I'm not totally familiar with everything down that way. I live in the mistake on the lake. We get along pretty well with EFD up here. A lot of the guys there vollied to start, and virtually everyone at the last test was a volly somewhere. Every career/volly area has spats, but for the most part, up here, we get along great, and call each other for mutual aid no problem.

  11. #11
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    Like most of the other guys have said, there's no reason to be ashamed to put your volunteer experience on an application. Wether you get 'credit' for it or not, it shows you do have an interest in doing this job. I always thought if you were commited to the fire service, you do it for free, and love it, why wouldn't you be a great paid firefighter. Ultimately, wether you have experience or not, some departments prefer it while some would almost rather you didn't; just for the fact that you could have developed some bad habits (although likely won't hold it against you). Either way the dept should fully train you in basic firefighting in the beginning and teach you their procedures.

  12. #12
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    In my town you can take the EMT-B class at 16, but you won't be recognized as an EMT until you are 18. Who cares if they don't like the vollies? If they are going to hire the best candidate for the job, they are going to take someone who they know has 4 years of service already over someone who has the same qualifications as you and is fresh out of college and never been on a truck going to a call. Might as well go ahead and put it down.

  13. #13

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    It is not that we hate vollies, in fact most guys use to be or still are. The fact is though when you get hired we dont want to hear how great Fountain Hill is or any other department you ran with. If it was so great stay there.
    Dont come to your first day in the academy wearing a wacker shirt and have blue lights on your car. Keep in on the down low
    We dont want to hear that you have every cert in the world. If you do great. Guess what you are going to go to the academy anyway. Having certification is great cause hopefully all the stuff is a review, but dont tell the instructor that I know that already etc.

    How can you say we dont get along with vollies when the come into the city everytime we have a 2 alarm fire.

    Know what your taking about before you post something. And by the way like one of the others said on hear dont be suprised if you made a name for yourself already.

    Also, if you think allentown doesnt like vollies try applying for Bethlehem and see how that works out for you.

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