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    Alright well things are a bit complicated.. some things about me


    I am 17 years old and recently dropped out of high school and am currently working construction full time. I am not a typical high school drop out though, I have a plan with my life, and am looking to advance. I am getting my GED next week and am going to start attending community college. I chose to drop school because I am not learning anything there. Honestly today's high school education system is a joke. I want to get on with my life and start community college early, and take some fire science courses, etc., instead of waiting to graduate and then attend community college.

    The main reason I am posting is because I am seriously considering becoming choosing firefighting as a career but I have some questions on some things that may hold me back.

    - A GED instead of a high school diploma(is this looked down on by most fire stations?)
    - I do not have great vision(20/50 and 20/80 uncorrected) but I wear contact lenses and have 20/20 vision. I have done some research on the vision requirements for becoming a firefighter but have come up with mixed info. Will this hold me back?
    - Slightly Red/Green colorblind. That is what the doctor told me atleast, but it is slight, and I do not notice it in everyday life at all(I can see Red/Green and all other colors fine, it is just certain shades of the colors I am guessing)

    Other than that I am in good physical health etc.,
    Thanks for checking out the thread and I would greatly appreciated any info or opinions that anyone has to offer.

  • #2
    What?

    How are you going to explain why you dropped out of high school with about a year to go to those who are going to decide if you get a badge over the hundreds that graduated without deciding to quit and get a GED instead? There might be more to this story?

    In this semi-military organization they are looking for those who will follow orders, stick to the rules and regulations and be able to be relied upon not to quit when the going gets tough.
    _____________________________________________

    "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

    Comment


    • #3
      Get a college degree.



      (high school is useless, even more so here in Florida. Colleges dont even trust diplomas. Thats why there are the SATs and ACTs)
      Last edited by Schwaa; 09-18-2006, 01:51 PM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by CaptBob
        How are you going to explain why you dropped out of high school with about a year to go to those who are going to decide if you get a badge over the hundreds that graduated without deciding to quit and get a GED instead? There might be more to this story?

        In this semi-military organization they are looking for those who will follow orders, stick to the rules and regulations and be able to be relied upon not to quit when the going gets tough.
        Do you make yourself sick like you make me sick with your "perfect candidate" nonsense. There are no "perfect" people in this world. This kid comes on here looking for advise in doing the "RIGHT" thing and he gets a comment like the rubbish that comes from your mouth. Do us a favor and retire your soapbox.
        Last edited by metsfan06; 09-18-2006, 07:00 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Don't know where you live, but here are the local requirements:

          Eligibility Requirements: To apply for the position of firefighter, you must:
          - Be at least 18 years of age
          - Have a high school diploma or GED
          - Have a valid driver's license and a good driving record
          - Have no felony convictions or misdemeanors involving moral turpitude
          - Have no illegal drug use within the last 12 months
          - Have an honorable discharge, if any, from the military
          - Meet the medical requirements set forth in NFPA 1582
          Have you possibly considered joining a local volunteer station? Not only will this allow you to see if this is something you would want to do as a career, but it is also another way to gain experience, knowledge, training, etc.

          In a way, I can see where Capt Bob is coming from with his comments, but as is clearly outlined above, the requirements here are either a HS diploma OR a GED. If I was on the oral board, would I question as to why the candidate dropped out? YES. Would I possibly have concerns about the candidate's willingness/ability/commitment to follow through even with tasks that might be considered "pointless" or a "waste of time?" YES. Are there legit reasons some people drop out? I guess. Are there any reasons why I think that alex1227 will be frowned upon for having a GED? NO, not based on the information he gave. Although, there are always 2 sides to a story. (I *personally* don't think that "because I wasn't learning anything" is a good enough reason to have dropped out of high school. Hell, if that was me, I would have stayed in school, been #1 in my graduating class, gone to some nice College, gotten my degree, and then become a firefighter.)
          Do it because you love it, not because you love being seen doing it.

          Comment


          • #6
            Go All The Way!!! It's In Your Hands~

            I must say, I have been in your shoes! I have earned a GED as well as a Associates in Fire Science. I dropped out for an entire different reason however, family, work... Nothing by choice. I have since earned my career goal as obtaining that famous "PROBIE" title in a career fd. on a fairly busy engine company... I never thought I would make my agility, let alone the oral board... Careers do come true if you stick to your GOALS! Anything in this big bad WORLD is possible if you set your mind to it as well! YOU have to want to though. And whatever may come for you, find one reliable choice to help you in your career choice and stick to one advisor. Don't turn all over for answers.... because there are "SOAPBOXES" under every leaf you turnover. Hang in there kid, you can make it happen... Get that GED and then to college! Dont give up!!!!

            Comment


            • #7
              Get your GED or diploma, then go to a college to get your BA in whatever interests you, you may find something you really enjoy doing instead of firefighting. Plus college is ALOT of fun, and I mean alot trust me. And I don't mean just because there are parties going on pretty much all day every day. In fact I mostly stayed away from them and still had alot of fun with friends. Your young now, don't be in a hurry to grow up, because once its gone its gone. You have the whole rest of your life to work.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by FTMPTB15
                In a way, I can see where Capt Bob is coming from with his comments, but as is clearly outlined above, the requirements here are either a HS diploma OR a GED. If I was on the oral board, would I question as to why the candidate dropped out? YES. Would I possibly have concerns about the candidate's willingness/ability/commitment to follow through even with tasks that might be considered "pointless" or a "waste of time?" YES. Are there legit reasons some people drop out? I guess.

                FTMPTB15 is on target here. You get the job in the oral board. A candidate is looking for a seamless, no surprises interview to get a top score to get a shot at that infamouse badge. All you need to have is a doubt with only one rater to affect your score to be considered.

                This can also play out in the psych test an interview with the psychologist who is going to be the gate keeper for anyone going forward. Making statements like the following can open a can of worms you might not be able to close:

                I chose to drop school because I am not learning anything there. Honestly today's high school education system is a joke.

                Captain Bob
                Last edited by CaptBob; 09-19-2006, 11:57 AM.
                _____________________________________________

                "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

                Comment


                • #9
                  “I am not a typical high school drop out though,”

                  The problem is that you will spend time defending your decision in an interview. I can tell you that it is very difficult to put a positive spin on being a high school drop out.

                  Are there high school drop outs that have become firefighters or become successful in reaching their goals? Absolutely, thousands of them. The challenge you have is that you have to overcome this in the hiring process.

                  I wish I had an opportunity to speak to you before you made your decision. A little sacrifice upfront would have paid dividends in the long run.

                  I am certain this will cause a huge debate here, but it is my personal opinion that you made a poor choice.

                  For the record a GED is not the same as a high school diploma. It is the minimum that is acceptable. We do not look to hire the minimum standard.

                  It will have much more of an impact on you as a young man trying to get into the fire service. As the years pass it will mean less.

                  Paul Lepore
                  Battalion Chief
                  www.aspiringfirefighters.com
                  Last edited by BCLepore; 09-19-2006, 11:41 PM.
                  Paul Lepore
                  Battalion Chief
                  www.aspiringfirefighters.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I am sorry, but you blew it. If high school was so non-challenging, then you should have been producing straight As, then tell me "I'm bored..." Some local Comm. Colleges let HS Seniors take Fire Tech. classes in Calif. You could have probably done the same.

                    The fact is, we as oral board raters judge you by our personal life standards and benchmarks. If I can complete high school (and I hated it too), then why should I give you a job if you cant meet my/the personal standard? If I can pass EMT with a minimal of 70%, so should you. Get me?

                    More- You are in construction now. I am sorry, but that was the typical "drop out catch" for when I was in high school in the 80s. And I heard- "But the money is good!" all the time. Yeah, well right now I am making good money as a career FF. (over 120K a year, with benefits) There are little to no benes in construction, no retirement and if/when you get hurt...You may be out of a job.

                    Lastly- Now get the AA/AS. If you can produce strong grades (B's and up) and complete your degree in a timely manner, then you might get a break for dropping out of high school.

                    Lastly, I am not trying to sound like a jerk here. But someone has to say it to you. Its the real deal. Like Capt. Bob said, you are going up against hundreds to thousands of other candidates with excellent backgrounds, training, education and experience and your platform to be a paid professional Firefighter is- ________________.

                    Lock it up. See if you can get back into high school and graduate with your class. Again, I HATED high school, but grinded it out and have had to submit my diploma several times to a department when testing. I said DIPLOMA, not CERTIFICATE.

                    Also- A lot of people in here will play down the education part and pimp the "be a Volunteer" spin. It worked for them and it will work for you. Wrong. Being a PCF, Reserve, Volunteer, Junior is one part of your future career, but not the entire platform. Education IS your bench. Something to build off of. Volunteering and part-time stuff will always be there, but the education is your foundation.

                    Oh, nugget here...You do not apply to "stations". You apply to Departments.

                    If you think my writings are a little on the rough side, wait until you hit the tower. And then probation. This is real life, not "Third Watch".

                    PM or email me if you need some help...Bou
                    Last edited by CALFFBOU; 09-20-2006, 05:52 AM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Ok. so now that you guys have bashed him on his GED, why not adress his other concerns? Or did you even see those?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by CALFFBOU
                        I am sorry, but you blew it. If high school was so non-challenging, then you should have been producing straight As, then tell me "I'm bored..." Some local Comm. Colleges let HS Seniors take Fire Tech. classes in Calif. You could have probably done the same.

                        The fact is, we as oral board raters judge you by our personal life standards and benchmarks. If I can complete high school (and I hated it too), then why should I give you a job if you cant meet my/the personal standard? If I can pass EMT with a minimal of 70%, so should you. Get me?

                        More- You are in construction now. I am sorry, but that was the typical "drop out catch" for when I was in high school in the 80s. And I heard- "But the money is good!" all the time. Yeah, well right now I am making good money as a career FF. (over 120K a year, with benefits) There are little to no benes in construction, no retirement and if/when you get hurt...You may be out of a job.

                        Lastly- Now get the AA/AS. If you can produce strong grades (B's and up) and complete your degree in a timely manner, then you might get a break for dropping out of high school.

                        Lastly, I am not trying to sound like a jerk here. But someone has to say it to you. Its the real deal. Like Capt. Bob said, you are going up against hundreds to thousands of other candidates with excellent backgrounds, training, education and experience and your platform to be a paid professional Firefighter is- ________________.

                        Lock it up. See if you can get back into high school and graduate with your class. Again, I HATED high school, but grinded it out and have had to submit my diploma several times to a department when testing. I said DIPLOMA, not CERTIFICATE.

                        Also- A lot of people in here will play down the education part and pimp the "be a Volunteer" spin. It worked for them and it will work for you. Wrong. Being a PCF, Reserve, Volunteer, Junior is one part of your future career, but not the entire platform. Education IS your bench. Something to build off of. Volunteering and part-time stuff will always be there, but the education is your foundation.

                        Oh, nugget here...You do not apply to "stations". You apply to Departments.

                        If you think my writings are a little on the rough side, wait until you hit the tower. And then probation. This is real life, not "Third Watch".

                        PM or email me if you need some help...Bou
                        That diploma means Shi* as long as you completed school whether it be by Ged or highschool graduation. That is why fire depts. around this country allow the Ged. Never in my life did i or probably will i see a Dept. require a college degree. If the kid was smart he would get his Ged and join the military. Then he would Qualify for those veteran points that could push anyone up over that guy standing there with a fire science degree in their hands. Oral board rater $120,000.00 a year were so proud of you.Let me pat you on the back. Was firefighting to much for you? Thank god I live on the east coast.
                        Last edited by metsfan06; 09-20-2006, 10:50 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Hang in There

                          Alex.....While there's a lot of helpful hints for you to be a firefighter with the G.E.D. you just give some of the candidates a head start. If you hang in there and give it your best effort there is....and I repeat...there is a department out there that will hire you. I've had the experience to be around a lot of fire departments and you could and would fit in. So just take what some of the people have said in this thread and move on to your dream.

                          Respectfully,
                          Jay Dudley, Retired Fire
                          Respectfully,
                          Jay Dudley
                          Retired Fire
                          Background Investigator
                          IACOJ-Member
                          Lifetime Member CSFA
                          IAFF Alumni Member

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by metsfan06
                            That diploma means Shi* as long as you completed school whether it be by Ged or highschool graduation. That is why fire depts. around this country allow the Ged. Never in my life did i or probably will i see a Dept. require a college degree. If the kid was smart he would get his Ged and join the military. Then he would Qualify for those veteran points that could push anyone up over that guy standing there with a fire science degree in their hands. Oral board rater $120,000.00 a year were so proud of you.Let me pat you on the back. Was firefighting to much for you? Thank god I live on the east coast.

                            Yes, I love pushing buttons. A diploma is better than a GED. I have seen a FD require a degree and its getting more and more visible.

                            Join the military for extra points? That East Coast thinking. So he can go to Iraq? Why not get an education and focus on the main prize? A job. Vet. points are nice, but not always the key to a badge.

                            Oral board rater- Those are extra side duties to being a ranked Firefighter. No back pat needed. You were wrong there.

                            Back to the kid...

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Color Impaired

                              Originally posted by Schwaa
                              Ok. so now that you guys have bashed him on his GED, why not adress his other concerns? Or did you even see those?

                              OK, the vision issue:

                              "Colorblind"

                              This from a candidate:

                              Hello Captain Bob,

                              I just wanted to drop this web site by, it is in regards to color vision. I was recently disqualified from the San Diego fire academy for failing my medical Exam. I failed because I was unable to pass the color vision tests they gave me. I appealed the disqualification and did many hours of research on color deficiency and in my research I came across like the colormax lens. Contact lens called Chromagen lens that are FDA approved. I contacted an ophthalmologist that is proved on there web site and was able to get a prescription to correct my color vision. I was able to pass 100% both color vision tests the ishihara and Farnsworth. I was able to retest with the city and passed the color vision part of the medical exam. The total cost for the Doctors visit and prescription was appox. $600.00. If this can help any one else with color deficiency I would highly recommend it.

                              Web Site: http://www.chromagen-international.c...ex2_ingles.htm

                              Jeremy

                              Here are some more tips:

                              Ok, According to the EEOC and ADA if you can't pass the color test given, but the doctor asks you to identify basic colors IE Red, Green, and Blue etc. You have to show that even though you cant pass the test you will still be able to perform the basic job duties, by being able to tell these basic colors. You just need to articulate to them they you can perform the basic job duties of identifying the colors of cars and clothing descriptions. POST has also said that if an applicant fails the test, but can id the basics he/she is fine. or if it came down to it, but don’t recommend you can get the x chrome contact lenses which is a couple of hundred dollars, even though its not allowed and just wear it with out them finding out "cheating." The lenses don’t enable you to see colors, but changes them so you can identify them.

                              The test you took was the Ishihara plate test. Which it does tell a Dr. that you are colorblind. The bad thing about this test is unfair for people with a slight colorblindness, since the Ishihara plates are deliberately artificial images, and do not represent the range of colors that people see in everyday life. I had this problem with my agency. Ask them for another option. Ask if you can go and have a Farnsworth D15 test. This test will show how severe your colorblindness is. You will have to pay for it your self. Do keep in mind that some agencies will DQ you for being colorblind no matter what. Good luck and do not let this stop you going for what you want!
                              _____________________________________________

                              "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

                              Comment

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