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When to give up hope?

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  • When to give up hope?

    I've taken many many civil service test and have yet to crack the top few needed to get a position. I've had a couple interviews but both have been on lists that I am in the top "1,000" some and never got a number on what position I was. I don't want to say I am running out of hope but I've read book after book on taking civil service test and taking the practice questions in those book and it has really gotten me nowhere. Just looking for what you all keep going for. I cant think of any other job I'd want to do besides being a firefighter/paramedic. I've applied for just paramedic jobs in ED's and that still is a far cry from doing EMS. Also a little caviot to my story, because of my wife's position with her current job (which pays really well) we cannot move from where we currently live (northeast Ohio) but there are quite a few full time depts here and they all seem to test every couple years but I'm just running low on confidence I'd guess.
    Firefighter, EMT-P, CICP, EMSI, HazMat Tech

  • #2
    Keep up hope man, keep applying, eventually you will get something. I just recently started applying for big cities(last year) and have taken one test(Dallas) so far. 1st road block already came up(getting transcripts sent on time) After I take Columbus and Dayton tests if I don't get hired on I'm going to go to school and get fire/emt certs and start applying for the smaller departments.
    If I were you, next year apply for all the wildland fire jobs you can on usajobs.com.
    You will defiantly get called. I got like 10-15 calls, and all I have is vet status but had to decline them all because baby is on the way and I would be out of state working when it's born. Also, I'd be unemployed when I came back from the fire season, and if I don't make enough in that 5-8 months, I'd be screwed..next year though I'm going to reapply if I don't get on a department, and if no fed agencies hire me before then.

    You have options!
    Last edited by zack_kcaz; 04-03-2011, 11:48 AM.

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    • #3
      I know that life lite or maybe it was metro was hiring for ground crews to run there squads so you might wanna give that a shot.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by ffmedicmatt View Post
        I've taken many many civil service test and have yet to crack the top few needed to get a position. I've had a couple interviews but both have been on lists that I am in the top "1,000" some and never got a number on what position I was. I don't want to say I am running out of hope but I've read book after book on taking civil service test and taking the practice questions in those book and it has really gotten me nowhere. Just looking for what you all keep going for. I cant think of any other job I'd want to do besides being a firefighter/paramedic. I've applied for just paramedic jobs in ED's and that still is a far cry from doing EMS. Also a little caviot to my story, because of my wife's position with her current job (which pays really well) we cannot move from where we currently live (northeast Ohio) but there are quite a few full time depts here and they all seem to test every couple years but I'm just running low on confidence I'd guess.
        A Mega roadblock for you is not being able to move. Applying for the same few depts over and over wont cut it. The guys on the panel have probably seen you before and know you. If you haven't made any drastic changes IE education/Certs and improved your interview skills their not going to look at you.

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        • #5
          have you also looked farther out?

          If you work say every third day, a little more of a drive will not hurt, when you only make it evry third day. or whatever the schedule is

          compared to five days a week job
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZdEH...e_gdata_player

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          • #6
            You are only 24...have you given the Military a thought?
            "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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            • #7
              Don't give up!!! Find out what the schedules are like for further cities like Pittsburgh. I know guys who drive 4 hours one way for their shift, but a lot of departments are going to a 48/96 shift, which means you only need to make that drive once every 6 days. I second the military if that's an option for you. Keep taking your local tests - they may notice that you're persistant, which will sell big time in your orals.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by TL678 View Post
                A Mega roadblock for you is not being able to move. Applying for the same few depts over and over wont cut it. The guys on the panel have probably seen you before and know you. If you haven't made any drastic changes IE education/Certs and improved your interview skills their not going to look at you.
                Paramedic, ACLS, PALS, ITLS, BLS instructor, 240-hour firefighter, HazMat Technician...not that many other certifications to get but I am going to do some rope rescue classes when I can.

                Originally posted by fire49 View Post
                have you also looked farther out?

                If you work say every third day, a little more of a drive will not hurt, when you only make it evry third day. or whatever the schedule is

                compared to five days a week job
                yeah. I have thought about that. I am starting to expand my boundaries.

                Originally posted by FWDbuff View Post
                You are only 24...have you given the Military a thought?
                yeah I have. I've even talked to one of my buddies that works for the Army. I'd work as a civilian firefighter but I'm not the military type.



                I'm not sure how my interview skills are but I have only had 2 interviews. My problem lies with written testing. I have done many of the civil service test books but have still come up on the short end when it comes to the written testing. I agree that not being able to move is a hindrance but I've taken 14 tests in a little over a year and nothing. Best effort I have to show is 41st on a test where they took the top 30 for polygraphs.

                It's just a big kick in the crotch every time I get a letter in the mail from whatever city saying thanks but you're no good. Of course it is worded better than that.
                Firefighter, EMT-P, CICP, EMSI, HazMat Tech

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ffmedicmatt View Post
                  My problem lies with written testing. I have done many of the civil service test books but have still come up on the short end when it comes to the written testing. I agree that not being able to move is a hindrance but I've taken 14 tests in a little over a year and nothing. Best effort I have to show is 41st on a test where they took the top 30 for polygraphs.
                  There's probably a lot of guys testing against you that would love to see you quit, then one of them can get the job.

                  If you can't pass the written with a high enough score, then figure out exactly which part gives you trouble, and focus on that. Get a math tutor, english tutor, etc if you have to.

                  14 tests is not enough to be talking about giving up.

                  One year is not nearly long enough to be talking about giving up.

                  I was 16-18 months in, and had taken over 20 tests by the time I got hired. A number of my classmates in the academy had been at it longer, and taken more tests.

                  It's hard to get on the job, for good reason. If you're ready to give up hope so soon, maybe the job isn't for you.

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                  • #10
                    i've taken that many tests in the past year and I'm using that timeline with school. In the past 3 years I'm well over 30 test. I used to live in Northwest Ohio and there were less tests due to less full time depts. Also not having my paramedic excluded a lot of test. Im not really ready to give up completely. Im just kind of stuck in a rut is a good way to put it. I also was on a combo dept for 4 years so I have some experiance...which doesnt seem to help any
                    Firefighter, EMT-P, CICP, EMSI, HazMat Tech

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                    • #11
                      The Number One Problem in Getting Hired!

                      How many opportunities have you wasted?

                      The number one problem I’ve seen in getting a badge is candidates don’t learn how to take a firefighter oral board interview that is like no other. The oral is usually 100% of your score to be hired. No matter what your credentials or experience it you can present the package at the interview you will be stuck in the process and never see a badge.

                      Most candidates who score low on the oral attempt to go back and pack on more credentials thinking that will get them over the hump. They think that they have to finish their degree, certificates or get through academy training first before reapplying. While these are sound strategies to improving your résumé, they do little to improve the skills needed for the oral board.

                      You have to have a prepared presentation going into your oral that is going to stun the panel into giving you the badge over the other candidates.

                      For all of the candidates out there that don't believe this, try passing and ranking #1 on orals with a stuttering problem . . . I did. -- Dave
                      Last edited by CaptBob; 04-03-2011, 11:18 PM.
                      _____________________________________________

                      "Nothing counts 'til you have the badge . . . Nothing!"

                      More Tips on getting hired and promoted by Firehouse Contributing Author Fire “Captain Bob” Articles here:
                      http://www.firehouse.com/contact/10544410/bob-smith


                      Fire "Captain Bob"

                      www.eatstress.com

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                      • #12
                        My first test was 9 years ago. Since then I've been testing at every department within 100 miles of my home, and still at it.

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                        • #13
                          I agree CaptBob

                          I hate doing oral boards

                          I have only had to do three oral boards, and was bad at all three, but some how got a two jobs out of three

                          I also have seen applicants at oral boards,
                          one I remember he comes in leans back in the chair and thought he was doing the board a favor being there.

                          Then there is the ones that give a two sentence answer to what should be at least a three minute answer.
                          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZdEH...e_gdata_player

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                          • #14
                            This is the guy who wanted to "backdoor" his way into a paid fire job. And now he wants sunshine blown up his ***? Either keep trying to get a job or give up and be a paramedic for the rest of your life. Either way, no one wants to hear your and the other 10 sob stories on here everyday about how no one will hire you.

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                            • #15
                              Toledo is taking apps...

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