How to Become a Firefighter?

How to Become a Firefighter
5 min read

Job Description of a Firefighter

Firefighters are extremely important in any society, their job is quite taxing as they have to work in several different areas and geographical locations, depending on the catastrophe they are dealing with. It is the job of firefighters to save lives, prevent catastrophes, and do as much damage control as possible while saving not only humans but animals as well. The firefighters have to respond to several different emergencies. Firefighters have to respond to grave situations like car crashes, chemical spills, and many others. Firefighters not only out fires but also rescue people in natural disasters like floods, tornadoes, and earthquakes.

A firefighter’s job covers an extensive range of duties. It is part of the job description of a firefighter to not only put out fires and rescue people from flaming and burning buildings but firefighters also battle to extinguish wild forest fires and even rescue people stuck in elevators, locked cars, and stranded in some strange land. In addition to all that is mentioned above, firefighters also rescue animals who need rescuing as a cat stuck in a tree or some animal drowning in a water body.

Requirements to Become a Firefighter

It is important to keep in mind that firefighters are tasked with quite a large number of taxing challenges hence, there are several specific requirements one has to fulfill to become a firefighter in the United States of America (USA). There are some specific requirements that one has to fulfill to become a firefighter in the USA, the candidate:

  • Must be a citizen of the United States of America (USA)
  • Must have at least a high school diploma
  • Preferably have an associate degree or a bachelor's degree
  • Need to have a valid driver’s license
  • Must be at least 18 years of age
  • Must not be older than 28 to 35 years, there is both, an upper and lower age limit for the firefighter candidates
  • Need to be physically fit and active
  • Must not have a criminal record, any felony charges, or domestic abuse charges
  • Must not have a record of drug abuse
  • Should keep a good credit score, financially stable candidates are preferred in the selection

Steps to Become a Firefighter

If you want to serve the community by providing your services as a firefighter then you should diligently follow the steps provided below which outline the way to becoming a firefighter.

Here are the steps to become a firefighter

  • Acquire at least a high school diploma, but higher education is preferred
  • Successfully pass the firefighter candidate assessment
  • Wait for a job opening and then apply for the job
  • Pass the written test and qualify for the interview
  • Successfully clear the interview to get shortlisted
  • Pass the Physical fitness and agility test
  • Should have a good score on the Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT) as several fire departments accept it as a fitness certificate, but there could be a few fire departments that prefer to take physical fitness themselves.
  • Clear the necessary background check as well as drug test and psychological evaluation
  • Wait for the official selection letter
  • Join the firefighter academy upon receiving the selection letter
  • Complete the firefighter training provided at the academy
  • Acquire the EMT license

How long does it take to become a Firefighter?

The process of becoming a firefighter to getting selected as a candidate in the fire academy takes a few months, then the candidate has to undergo firefighter training for a few months before graduating from the academy. In addition to that, one also has to acquire an EMT license. The process of becoming a firefighter depends majorly on the degree of the candidate. It usually takes two years to acquire an associate degree while it takes four years to secure a Bachelor’s degree. Furthermore, to acquire a Master’s degree, one has to study for two more years after acquiring the Bachelor’s degree.

Thus, it is crystal clear that the higher the educational degree, the longer it will take one to become a firefighter. In conclusion, it takes around a year to a few years to officially become a firefighter in the United States of America (USA) and serve the country through thick and thin. It is important to remember that becoming a firefighter is quite competitive thus one should provide the level best to successfully fulfill the requirements, diligently pass all the tests, and give excellent performance in the fire academy to acquire the license.

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