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Thread: Military MOS for fire service?

  1. #1
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    Default Military MOS for fire service?

    What would you suggest for someone entering the guard/reserves: Corpsman or FF? or something else?

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    Military MOS for fire service?
    The MOS is 21M.

    Can't cry bout me not answering the question as asked, huh?

    But yeah..."All this has happened before.... in 50 billion other threads," says Caprica-Six.
    My opinions might coincide with someone of importance's POV... I wouldn't know, since I never bothered to ask. My policy is: "Don't ask, don't care."

    IACOJ--West Coast PITA

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    Quote Originally Posted by ExplorerLt1991 View Post
    What would you suggest for someone entering the guard/reserves: Corpsman or FF? or something else?
    The question for you is why do you want to be a firefighter in the military? Is it because that is something you WANT to do, or is it something to try and use the military to better your shot at a civilian dept along the way?

    If being a firefighter is what you want to do, then each branch has their own version of firefighter. You will do some aspects of firefighting, but the military and civilian worlds can differ, also each branch does things different as well.

    If looking at the military just to better your shot at a civilian career, then don't look at firefighting. As it is today, any vet has the same shot at a firefighter position as someone who did firefighting in the service. Basically someone who spent their time in the infantry and in combat has the same chances of being a firefighter as someone who specialized in firefighting. Education is what gets you the best chance of getting onto a career dept.
    Your best bet would be to find a job that really does intrest you in the military and use your education benefits to the fullest extent and work on a fire protection degree.

    Just look at why you want to be a firefighter in the military and don't expect the military firefighting training to really get you onto a department. You get experience and can learn a lot, but in the end, most departments are looking for college education and certifications to get on a dept and the military certs just are not enough nowadays.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    Do a search, lots of info. out there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jccrabby3084 View Post
    If being a firefighter is what you want to do, then each branch has their own version of firefighter. You will do some aspects of firefighting, but the military and civilian worlds can differ, also each branch does things different as well.
    Crabby--not quite true. While the Marine Corps has an MOS for Crash Fire-Rescue, and the Navy has the Damage Controlman rating (not to mention everybody aboard ship is trained in shipboard fire suppression)... for structural fire protection, the Navy/Marine Corps relies upon Fed Civilian Firefighters (GS series 0081). The Coasties have their own variation of DCs as well, but no specific "Firefighter" rating. I've never seen any Fed Civilian FF jobs flown to CG Stations, so I'm assuming their land-asset fire protection is provided by local agencies under agreement.

    Also, the Army has somewhere around 1000-1500 21Ms (Firefighters)... very, very few of those slots are in the Guard. A lot of fire positions at Army Guard installations are State civilian employees, or Army/Air Techs (technically Fed civilians, kinda )--I've seen very few AGR/SAD Guard FFs doing all-hazard FF duties, and most of those are on the Air Guard side. If you look under GS series 0081, you'll find plenty of Fed Civilian FF positions flown for CONUS Army installations, meaning yep--at least stateside--RA installation fire protection is provided for the most part by Fed Civilians, not 21Ms.

    OP:
    There's actually an CA ARNG 21M floating around here somewheres, he popped up in the wildland forum in the thread about Guard skid units, might be a good guy to PM and ask directly about being a 21M...cause I'm a 68W. I just stayed at a Holiday Inn (the real one, not the Express version), and used to be a Mod-of-all-trades at military.com...
    My opinions might coincide with someone of importance's POV... I wouldn't know, since I never bothered to ask. My policy is: "Don't ask, don't care."

    IACOJ--West Coast PITA

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    The real deal is Air Force Firefighter, there you get training that us unmatched for ARFF. Very few capitalize on the ARFF training that is very scarce outside of gov't agencies.

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    To answer ExplorerLt1991's question-it depends. If you plan to get FF certified so you can apply for civilian jobs, make sure the state you want to work in accepts IFSAC/NPQ certifications. If it doesn't but the medic/corpsman job gets you NREMT, medic may be better.

    The Marine Corps ARFF MOS is 7051. USMC Reserve units with 7051s are at Miramar, Minneapolis, and Willow Grove, PA. Search "7051" over at the Federal/Military Forum and you'll get plenty of info and opinions on military firefighting.

    1141, Northern MI has two Army Guard Firefighting units at Camp Grayling, the 1439th and 1440th Engineers. They can't be the only Army Guard FFs out there.
    GardnerJ likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by the1141man View Post
    Crabby--not quite true. While the Marine Corps has an MOS for Crash Fire-Rescue, and the Navy has the Damage Controlman rating (not to mention everybody aboard ship is trained in shipboard fire suppression)... for structural fire protection, the Navy/Marine Corps relies upon Fed Civilian Firefighters (GS series 0081). The Coasties have their own variation of DCs as well, but no specific "Firefighter" rating. I've never seen any Fed Civilian FF jobs flown to CG Stations, so I'm assuming their land-asset fire protection is provided by local agencies under agreement.

    Also, the Army has somewhere around 1000-1500 21Ms (Firefighters)... very, very few of those slots are in the Guard. A lot of fire positions at Army Guard installations are State civilian employees, or Army/Air Techs (technically Fed civilians, kinda )--I've seen very few AGR/SAD Guard FFs doing all-hazard FF duties, and most of those are on the Air Guard side. If you look under GS series 0081, you'll find plenty of Fed Civilian FF positions flown for CONUS Army installations, meaning yep--at least stateside--RA installation fire protection is provided for the most part by Fed Civilians, not 21Ms.

    OP:
    There's actually an CA ARNG 21M floating around here somewheres, he popped up in the wildland forum in the thread about Guard skid units, might be a good guy to PM and ask directly about being a 21M...cause I'm a 68W. I just stayed at a Holiday Inn (the real one, not the Express version), and used to be a Mod-of-all-trades at military.com...

    1141,

    I was a DC in the Navy and work with other FF's who got their start in the military as well for FF. One happened to be a DOD fire instructor while in the Air Force. Basically, I do understand how the military works for firefighting. Each branch has a version of firefighting and you learn in each. I also know that the military training really doesn't do much if looking for a career firefighting job.

    You can get good experience and you will train a lot and you learn many valuable skills that will serve you well in life. However, when it comes to using the military and military firefighting to springboard into a career dept, it just doesn't happen that way. The fire service is more education based and most of the time, only certain college degrees and certifications are accepted. I would never discourage someone from joining, nor even being a firefighter in the service, just don't expect it to provide your way onto a career dept. For those wanting to pursue a firefighting career, I recommend working on college credits while in the service, or on a degree while in the Reserves or Guard.



    Despite the training you receive in the military, you also have to realize the committment you are putting forth. If joining the service JUST to better your chances at a career dept, then don't waste your time. If you want to serve your country and learn some valuable skills and get money for college, then by all means join the service. In today's world though, anyone can go to a school and get a fire protection degree or their fire certifications. You could also get on a volunteer dept while going to school and chances are you would see more real fires than you ever would in the military. Use the military for experience, service, discipline and skills, just don't expect to walk out of the military and onto a career dept because you were a firefighter in the service.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ExplorerLt1991 View Post
    What would you suggest for someone entering the guard/reserves: Corpsman or FF? or something else?
    I would suggest not going guard/reserve unless you want to ensure your ticket to the war zone for one.

    I would suggest going active duty however.

    While yes you may still wind up in a war zone, you will be able to buy into the Montgomery GI Bill to further your education once completed with the military. You will then have the ability to transfer into a guard/reserve unit upon your active duty completion (KEYWORD- ability. Not set in stone).

    More importantly- for the most part, military rate training is only recognized in bits and pieces outside of the military. However the things that are UNIVERSALLY accepted:
    • Discipline instilled into you
    • The ability to work as part of a team to accomplish a mission
    • For the most part, as you will see exceptions, the physical fitness that you will obtain
    • The professionalism you learn in how to wear and maintain a uniform
    • The professionalism you learn in how to carry yourself and project a positive influence upon your community
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