1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber

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    Jan 2008
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    Default Questions about getting on somewhere..anywhere

    Hey everyone i am from Toledo,Ohio and i am at a college doing my Fire Science Degree to try and eventually get on to a Fire Squad.....I have a few questions......

    1. I am no Longer looking at trying to get on to Toledos Fire Department because i do not believe they are going to pass this levy that basically pays for Safety Services...and if it does not pass they are going to cut back big time...like 200 plus big....and they are supposed to have a Fire Test in April....i sent in an interest card and i have not got anything back from them and its already March.....If they do not pass this Levy....Is Toledo even going to have a Test????

    2. I was thinking about moving after i get my Degree(in a year and a half)....and find a place to get on to.....whats the best way about finding somewhere to get on thats not by Toledo but somewhere in Ohio....?

  2. #2
    Forum Member

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    Feb 2008
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    ok, take this for what it is worth, because I am not on anywhere full time yet. But, I am in the top ten or very high on many lists in Ohio, and currently going through the process for a couple of the bigger cities. Here is my advice (some you might have already done/be doing, or it may be really obvious, but I'm just listing it all):

    - Get your p-card
    - Get your 240
    - Get on a part time or volunteer dept. If you can, move if you have to. Seems like real experience is very important to getting hired. You'll also make connections with FT FF's who are doing a PT gig as a B job.
    - Get a job as a paramedic in a hospital or with a private. I prefer hospital b/c pay and benefits are usually better, among other reasons. Plus there are FF's who do this as their B job, and you will make connections this way.
    - Work your tail off at the two above jobs (yes, that is holding down two jobs, but you're young, you can do it, and it will help with money anyway). Seriously, you need good recommendations from your employers, and co-workers. And the EMS/FF world is a very small one. People talk. Become the type of person people want to work with and it will help you in the long run.
    - Take as many tests as possible starting now. Even if you think you wouldn't want to work there, take the test for the practice. If you aren't scoring high on tests, you don't have a chance no matter what you do.
    - Start noting what type of test it is and/or who the testing agency is. I've even taken PD tests for the practice and it has helped.
    - When you pick up your app or turn it in, ask who the testing agency is. Sometimes they will tell you, and then knowing this will help you study (because you will begin figuring out the type of questions on each type of tests).
    - The Don McNea seminars, when they have them, have really helped me. I feel it has been well worth the money to go to those.
    - As soon as you leave the tests, write down all of the questions you can remember, and then look up the answers later.
    - Get a tutor if you need help with math or reading comprehension. It is well worth the money.
    - Work out! Cardio is really important for any agility, so don't just lift weights. Do a balance of weights and cardio and make sure you are not overweight.
    - Go to the office in your college (usually career services or something like that) that helps with finding a job. Ask if they have mock interviews and resume help, and then use both services until you are comfortable with it.
    - Be very careful with your driving record. Even 4 pts can disqualify you from some places.
    - Don't do drugs! Even pot. Or break the law in any other way (like stealing stupid crap from work or something, or getting a disorderly conduct charge for drinking on a public sidewalk). Sounds obvious, but several of my friends have no hope of getting hired because they were stupid in the past. And it sucks to even have to admit to doing pot a couple of times.
    - Do not go racking up lots of charges on credit cards, or borrowing way too much money for a car! Pay your bills on time and live well within your means. Nearly every background I have been through checks your credit, and if you are overextended or don't pay bills on time, it reflects really poorly on you, makes you look irresponsible, and may get you disqualified. Plus it sucks to need extra paper to write down all of your debts on the app (yeah, that was me before I got smart).
    - Keep a copy of everything you fill out and hand in, so that you can always be consistent with your answers from the first app to background to interview(plus it makes it easier to fill out the next one).

    Ok, that is everything I can think of right now. I think this is the most competitive occupation in Ohio, so you have to be really aggressive if you want to get hired. And it still may take a couple of years.

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