Stability, steadiness, Tenacity or singleness of purpose, persistence, stamina, backbone.
These words equate with the qualities necessary to pursue this career, both at the very beginning when enrolling in the Fire Academy, enduring the long process of testing, getting hired, making probation, getting promoted, and last when preparing for retirement.
People have asked me over the years how long the process takes, and I tell them it is different for everyone, but in general, a long process. You don’t just fill out an application on Friday, get called the next week for an interview, and finally get the job in a couple of weeks.
That is where Perseverance comes in.
Enrolling in the Fire Academy to get state certified is the first step, and yes, the list to start is usually very long. As the years have passed since I went through the process, tenacity, along with stamina and a lot of patience is still required. I suggest you prepare physically, mentally, and have ALL required documentation completed. Many people are under the impression that you sign up first, and then prepare.
No ghost rider.
The ones who try and make excuses why they are out of shape, didn’t get their physical yet, or transcripts from school, etc. will be booted out before they start.
Stamina is your friend.
When I began my career firefighting was separate from emergency medicine except for becoming a first responder or the golden goose; EMT, which I had the foresight to become in the beginning.
Now the profession has evolved tremendously.
More often than not, these days if you wish to embark on this journey, firefighting, emt, associates degree is all crammed into one. Then Paramedic is next if you want to be with a progressive department and get promoted up the career ladder.
Becoming a Paramedic is not for sissies either.
And all of this takes place before you even have a paycheck, so being single minded with your focus on this incredible career is required.
Have I lost you yet?
I haven’t even started to talk to you about the various character’s you will encounter along the way.
And no, you cannot pull out the woman card.
Remember that I told you we would embark on this long journey together.