Being a firefighter is not easy and neither is the process of becoming a firefighter. Competition is fierce and the hiring process can be very grueling and challenging, something many people do not endure or succeed at. Champions Fire College gives a student/candidate the ability to prove themselves academically and practically with the fire services skills to get the desired job in the fire services. Please also consider some of the following ideas when researching the position of fire fighter.
1. Volunteer Your Time
It doesn’t matter if it is fire or non-fire related volunteer experience. Departments are looking for those with the desire and ability to provide community service and nothing proves this more than doing volunteer community service work. It is also a great way to build your resume for those just getting started and get great references. There are many great opportunities out there, so seek them out and find something that interests you. Burn camps are also a great place to volunteer and start networking with fire service professionals, but also consider homeless shelters, habitat for humanity, Big Brother/Big Sister programs and other great opportunities where you can make an impact on your community. This is what the fire service is all about and these are the kinds of people we are looking to join our team and represent our departments and profession.
2. Clean background and lifestyle
Whether you agree or disagree, it doesn’t matter. The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. Having a track record of problems (vehicle accidents, traffic tickets, arrests, domestic violence, anger management issues, etc.) will only make it harder for you to stand out in a positive way when compared to your competition. You can’t change the past, but you can start making some changes that will affect your future.
3. Take a First Aid Course
The great majority of time for the fire services these days is spent responding to medical calls. It only makes sense that a Fire Fighter candidate feels comfortable with this part of the job.
4. Understand ALL of the phases of the firefighter hiring process
If you do not understand what phases you will have to successfully pass, and pass well, to become a firefighter, how are you ever going to succeed? The selection process will vary in different regions and even from department to department, but there are some basic similarities across the board. You need to become familiar with this process as a whole and each step within the process. Start doing some research on how departments in your area, or where you hope to test, conduct their recruitments and what the more commonly used phases are (oral interview, written examination, physical agility, background investigation, etc.).
5. Get some life experience
The last think the fire department who hires you wants to do is have to train or teach you how to clean a toilet, how to treat customers, how to cook a meal, how to do dishes, how to do yard work or even basic mechanical aptitude. These are things you should bring to the job, and not expect the fire department to have to teach you! Your new Captain does not want to teach you how to do any of those above mentioned duties. They should be teaching you things like fire behavior, building construction, tool and equipment operations and maintenance, etc. How does one gain life experience? By getting out of their comfort zone, exploring a variety of vocations, gaining various job skills and most importantly gaining their independence.
6. Learn as much as you can about the fire service
The fire service should not just be a job; it should be a career and you should be passionate about the career and all that goes along with it. Having your thumb on the pulse of the fire service, will help you to standout from your competition and prepare you for the career. It is going to be up to you to educate yourself and seek out the opportunities that are available. You must be aggressively pro-active in your quest for knowledge and information. You must also seek out opportunities to gain hands on experience to compliment your education.
7. Start preparing for your background and Resume
Resumes and Cover Letters are an important piece to be noticed. Seek help from a Professional Source.
• Information from every employer you have worked for (dates, duties, title, supervisor name, salary, etc.).
• Information from every school you have attended – high school and later (degrees received, dates attended, grade point average, etc.).
• Information about certificates, licenses, or other key documents you may possess and will be required to show proof of by the way of a photocopy.
• Information about your driving record, including dates, locations and outcomes of tickets and accidents.
• Information about your military experiences, if any.