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Cali Fire

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  • Cali Fire

    Hello Everyone,

    My name is Krystal and I'm 35, switching careers from a lush job in the E.R. doing billing/administrative work, in one of the biggest healthcare businesses and transitioning into firefighting. Within the past 2 years I've obtained my EMT certification, 45% done with my Associates in Fire Science and I'm volunteering with the City Fire Reserves. Did I mention I still do work full time and attend full time classes, busy woman.

    Some main concerns with this transition for me are as follows. I was recently told by a Chief, about to retire in a year that the pension plan in Sacramento doesn't cover medical benefits. Alarming, I know, so I want a great retirement and advancement opportunities and looking online wasn't of much help.

    What are the best departments to learn, grow, and retire from? I would like career advancement down the road. I already see so many missed opportunities and room for improvement by just serving in the reserves that would be beneficial to their training program. But, at this point I'm not in a position to make much of an impact being so new to it. I absolutely adore the old firemen, they are filled with a wealth of knowledge that is unsurpassed so I definitely seek your input as well as others.

    Thanks for reading!
    Last edited by KrystalinFire; 07-12-2017, 01:18 PM.

  • #2
    Welcome from an Ex Calif

    I am not sure if you picked the right state or wrong state to be a firefighter in.

    From what I see the competition is high.

    Best advice is I think for Calif, is get your calif firefighter cert, before a degree in fire science.

    Than start applying everywhere and anywhere.

    I cannot speak to benefits, but thought I heard the other day, there are no retirement health benefits for Calif gov employees, anymore.

    Only way to check is call each city you are interested in and ask HR.

    I am not sure if some cities want paramedic, but if they do, would suggest working on that also, it give you more of a boost over other applicants.

    Once again apply and test everywhere and anywhere, not sure if you are willing to move?????

    The hiring process is not a short one, sometimes a year or more.

    Good luck

    would suggest check info on this site::::::::::


    • #3
      Thank you Fire5555,

      I appreciate the link, it has a ton of useful information, can't wait to dive into it. I did fail to mention that the Reserves is an academy with volunteer, drill, and testing built into it and over the course of a year you get your Firefighter 1. So, I'm working on it

      I'm originally from upstate NY and love the snow, so I am more than happy to move if need be, especially considering the information you presented with California not being a state in which pays out medical. I do know you end up keeping 90% of your highest earning year at retirement but that still doesn't take the place of health coverage. I see patients everyday that come in and unable to get approved for health coverage, slapped with large bills, it's sad.

      I guess I'll start making a list of all the states and calling HR Dept.'s, I was hoping there was a quicker way but nonetheless it will get the job done.

      Thanks again Fire, your input is super helpful!


      • #4
        I should have said, it seems the trend is not to provide health care to retirees???????

        I know some cities in our state do not. I know a MAJOR employer that does not.

        If you want to come to hot Texas, get your paramedic and almost guaranteed a job.

        There are some departments that do hire you off the street and put you through their academy, I think Orange County still does, maybe LA city,

        BUT, normally when you run into that setting, you are going against a few thousand people, for a few jobs, no good odds.

        Anyway here is the Texas list, check it weekly.

        I think you are to old for Fort Worth, sorry, that is the other thing to be aware of, is some cities to have upper age cut off.

        This is the normal list length:::

        You also have to look at Texas TDHS to transfer you emt


        • #5
          Maybe a plan is test around calif for say a year, with maybe a couple out of state tests,

          Than see where you are out, and either keep going in calif or test more outside

          Problem with testing out of state is travel cost, you normally have to go to a city 2-5 times before you even get a job offer.

          i do not want to knock firefighting but there are other jobs in the fire service, such as fire inspector. Some cities and possibly the state will hire with out being a fire fighter. Might think about it


          • #6
            Thanks Fire5555,

            I have thought about different avenues but I really want to learn firefighting skills, and move onto administrative work in order to better serve the fire department as a whole. I dislike it when the upper ups make policy changes and they themselves don't know the job at hand. To prevent that from happening I plan on being a firefighter for at least 10 years, or when I feel proficient before advancing up the ranks, god willing. I'll check out the out of state, already looking at Syracuse and Rochester but it doesn't look like there is much hiring going on.

            Last edited by KrystalinFire; 08-06-2017, 05:22 PM.


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