As long as you have your GED or high school degree, acquiring the necessary qualification as a firefighter might take you anywhere between a day and one year.
However, various factors may make you spend more time. You probably know when it comes to being a paid firefighter or a professional will take you a long time.
In most cases, you will have to spend several hours in post-hiring training at specific fire academies.
This means that if you are planning to take firefighting as a career, you will have to prepare to spend a lot of time before accomplishing your goal.
The training will usually take around 3 to 4 months, sometimes 6 or even more.
Besides the post-employment training that you will take at the fire institution, there are no other official requirements for firefighting work training.
However, keep in mind that in most fire departments you will have to have a GED or high-school degree.
The only thing you need to know when thinking about a firefighting job is that you are entering a competitive industry. Those applying for employment usually outnumber the available job positions.
Depending on the region, you can find 100 people fighting for 10 job openings. I hope this does not scare you but shows how things are in the firefighting industry.
In today’s world, you will have to spend two years learning about fire sciences when applying for a fire-fighting job.
Volunteer firefighter experience
You can as well volunteer as a fireman when preparing for a paid job as a firefighter. You probably know how volunteering can help you secure a job with ease.
You only have to be patient and show how best you are for the position. Do not perform poorly since you will not receive a salary. Give it your best and satisfy the employer to get your job hassle-free.
However, you will have to spend around 110 hours for you to volunteer as a fireman. You will spend this time studying an NFPA course, or any other NFPA certified course.
How long will it take you to apply for a fire-fighting job?
Most fire departments offer a position for new members per year or sometime two. For this reason, do not worry about delays for job openings after completing your firefighting training.
It can take you up to a year before getting an employment position. In case you will want to minimize the delays, you can familiarize yourself with the department you want to take your training from and act accordingly.
Make sure to plan your training in a way that job openings will be available as you complete your fireman training. You can visit the website of that particular department for more information on this.
The process of applying can take you anywhere between a few days to some weeks. In this case, I mean all the time you will spend preparing your resume, filling out the application forms, and creating your cover letters.
Some of the parts that will follow up include waiting for the results, showing up to the interviews, following-up, and waiting for the decision-making process by the department.
How long will it take you to become an EMT certified?
Although almost all fire-fighting departments require CPR certification. Again, most of them will require an Emergency Medical Technician certification (EMT).
Having this certification will give you an added advantage of position consideration. Depending on your state, you will have to spend many hours training to get the EMT certification.
Make sure to familiarize yourself with the fire departments in your region to know what they entail. Most individuals prefer taking EMT training at the same time as their fire sciences learning.
If you will plan to get paramedic certification, you will have to spend 2 more years.
Paramedic training will take you longer than you think when compared to EMT training. You will take anywhere between a thousand to two thousand training hours.
The total duration of 3 months – 7 years
All this shows that you will have to spend about 4 years for post-high school education, around three months to obtain an EMT certification, and the application process taking you a few weeks.
This means you will need 3 – 4 months for you to be a firefighter. If you will decide to take advanced training before the job and take longer applying, you can spend up to five years.
Moreover, it can take you 7 years in case you take a 4-year fire sciences degree and the paramedic studies.
You will undergo a probation process when hired attending more training by the municipalities. This means that you will have to add six months for you to be a full firefighter.
Your case can vary
Several factors will contribute to the length of time you will take to become a firefighter. Some of them include:
- The fire-fighting position you want
- The nature of the firefighting jobs industry in your country or state.
- The post-high school training you will want to pursue to be the best among other job seekers
- How efficient will you be in taking the post-employment studies and the preparation?
- The schedule of the particular departments interesting you in hiring new firefighting members.
How long will the probationary period take?
As a new employee, you might have to attend a probationary period before starting the job officially.
Each department will have a different duration depending on the post-employment training requirements and other preceding the programs.
With the many people who apply for firefighting jobs, you cannot deny that this is a very competitive industry. You might have to spend more time than you think in preparation for you to beat the competition.
If you are interested in this career, be prepared to spend anywhere between a day and 7 years to secure the job. However, various factors come in place making you spend less time or longer than you imagine.
Read the post above to determine what you need as a firefighter and know the duration it will take you before getting a job.