Welcome to EMT City
Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing topics, give reputation to other members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more. This message will be removed once you have signed in.

Hello!

Posted · Report post

Hi,

My name is Harrison and I'm currently a college student in my Sophmore year up at the University of Washington in Seattle. I registered on here hoping that you guys could give me some feedback because I've wanted to be a Paramedic since early High School. Hopefully it's alright that I don't have any current formal training. I didn't see any posts from people that weren't at least in EMT school, but I'm hoping it's because I didn't look far enough.

Anyways! My plan is to graduate my college with a BS in Chemistry and then start my training to eventually become a Paramedic. My mom said if I wanted to live off their money for schooling, I had to get a degree before I did anything. I'm totally fine with it though, seeing as it will be a good fall-back in case I ever want to go back to school.

So I do have a few questions for you guys and gals.

1) My first is what is the pay like? I've researched around and it's obviously based on where you practice, who employs you, and your level of training. But I'm looking to just live comfortably. I don't want to own a ferrari and spend money on all sorts of unnecessary luxuries, but I do want to have money to do with what I wish. Will I be able to do that? Any advice or feedback you guys have on that issue would be great as it's the most important one my parents have stressed to me.

2) Where should I get my training done? Are some places better to train than others? Will some places look better? And who should I prefer to employ me? Is working for a county better than private practice or vice versa?

3) Do you enjoy what you do? I want to become a Paramedic because I want to save lives and help people. It just seems like something I could be good at and enjoy doing while making a living.

I realize these questions probably come up quite a lot, but I finally registered on a site like this because I was looking for a type of topic I could respond to with my own situation.

Thanks so much!

-TrueBlueShark007/Harrison

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited) · Report post

1. You're going to start as an EMT-Basic, you don't want to know that pay. The bachelors degree will not be in your favor regarding pay. Once you get to the paramedic level its decent pay that you can live off, don't expect to become rich. Do not get into this profession for the money or you wont last too long.

2. Any place that offers the training is good. I would not really say that any are better than the other because they all have to match up to certain standard to be certified to teach emt's. County vs. Private is pretty hard to answer because it really all depends on location and how much they are generally willing to pay.

3. I love the job, in my personal view you have to.

Best of luck and welcome to the city. There should be a few to several other users that will give you their input on it all.

Edited by PattonEMT
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Welcome to the City!

1) The pay fluxuates as to where and who you work for. I am in Texas and work for a county based service and I make more money than most of my friends with college degrees. Plus most of the EMS schedules allow you to work a part time job when money is tight. I work part time for a private service but only work shifts when I feel the need. Usually before Christmas I pick up a few shifts and then again before vacation.

2.)It is hard to say what training will be best for you because I do not know about your area.

3.)Most of the time I love my job. There are days when it is hard and I question what I am doing, but then I have a little old lady who appreciates me and it all works out!

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

I am an EMT student and will start medic classes shortly after. I am part of a volunteer squad.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Do you mind if I ask why you are not planning on medical school? There is nothing wrong with being a paramedic but at that point you are half way to your MD/DO, why not just keep going? If you find EMS is a passion, you can still be involved. There is a new subspecialty in EMS for those who are EM trained.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Doc,

That is precisely what I've been struggling with for the past couple of years. I've decided on going with the med school route after I get my medic.....but now the struggle is whether or not to go D.O. or N.D.

Although I aspire to have my own family practice (with a pediatric emphasis), I do want to keep my anchors in EMS and emergency medicine.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited) · Report post

Problem with Med school is the major debt that comes after it then an additional 3-7 years of residency which isn't the best of pay then there's an optonal 1-3 years of fellowship training. If you get stuck in private practice depending on the speciality malpractice rates can be through the roof on top of that docs just don't get paid as much as they used to.

Honestly for the past several months or so I have been looking at PA (physician assistant) programs which I thought would be interesting. It also comes with a 70-100k salary depending on your training and experienced. Which you can always look into as well.

Edited by PattonEMT
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Anyways! My plan is to graduate my college with a BS in Chemistry and then start my training to eventually become a Paramedic. My mom said if I wanted to live off their money for schooling, I had to get a degree before I did anything. I'm totally fine with it though, seeing as it will be a good fall-back in case I ever want to go back to school.

A BS in chemistry? Go to medical school. Seriously. You will be much better off long term going to medical school than pursuing an EMS gig.

Going to medical school will also allow you to practice medicine. Get into an E-med program and you could wind up being a medical director to some of the medics out there.

1) My first is what is the pay like? I've researched around and it's obviously based on where you practice, who employs you, and your level of training. But I'm looking to just live comfortably. I don't want to own a ferrari and spend money on all sorts of unnecessary luxuries, but I do want to have money to do with what I wish. Will I be able to do that? Any advice or feedback you guys have on that issue would be great as it's the most important one my parents have stressed to me.

How familiar are you with the economic principle of supply and demand? EMTs are a dime a dozen. As such, their pay is ridiculously low. Since there are so many EMTs out there EMTs are also expendible and relatively disposable. You will, in all likelihood, not have money to do with as you wish. You won't have money for a decent car. Or rent. Or food. Or to take someone out on a decent date.

Paramedics, depending on where you are, do little better. Many wind up working multiple jobs just to make ends meet.

2) Where should I get my training done? Are some places better to train than others? Will some places look better? And who should I prefer to employ me? Is working for a county better than private practice or vice versa?

If you decide on EMS, find a college that offers a degree awarding EMS program. You may not need or want the second degree after your Chemistry BS. But the structure offered in a more formal college type setting will help you and should help ease your transition from one program to the other.

3) Do you enjoy what you do? I want to become a Paramedic because I want to save lives and help people. It just seems like something I could be good at and enjoy doing while making a living.

Paramedics don't actually save that many lives. It's a bit of a myth propogated by Hollywood and those moronic TV shows they insist on airing. EMS is a lot of hand holding. That's the part that isn't often portrayed. Not that hand holding is less important. Rather, it's not the glamour of the cardiac arrests or traumas or whatever other idiocy the Hollywood types like to pass off as a normal day at work.

Seriously. Go to medical school. As ERDoc noted, you're half way there already. Don't quit now.

Problem with Med school is the major debt that comes after it then an additional 3-7 years of residency which isn't the best of pay then there's an optonal 1-3 years of fellowship training. If you get stuck in private practice depending on the speciality malpractice rates can be through the roof on top of that docs just don't get paid as much as they used to.

There are programs out there after graduation to help with loan repayment. Yes, it is daunting to be looking at $200K+ in student loan debt. But for many it's not nearly as bad as one would think looking from the outside.

Honestly for the past several months or so I have been looking at PA (physician assistant) programs which I thought would be interesting. It also comes with a 70-100k salary depending on your training and experienced. Which you can always look into as well.

Where have you been looking? Have you done CASPA yet?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited) · Report post

I've been looking at UMDNJ and George Washington University because I have more family around that area and there's no programs here in little ol' Delaware. I have signed up for a CASPA account but I have yet to submit my aplication to anyone. If I am going to do anything I will probably do the application portion around May, I mean April. (mainly cause no one is accepting it right now) and get everything done if I am really going to try and get into PA school. UMDNJ and GWU won't be my only selections, I will probably submit it to a few other schools.

Edited by PattonEMT
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

University of New England in Biddeford Maine has an excellent reputation for it's PA program. They also have FNP and DO programs that are well respected.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited) · Report post

Hey Harrison,

Welcome, nice to see a fellow Seattleite here. I was just at the UofW Medical Center yesterday.

If I read you correctly, you said, " My mom said if I wanted to live off their money for schooling, I had to get a degree before I did anything." Lucky you! I guess you need to be steppin up to the plate, and getting some degrees then, wouldn't you say?

First off, why do you want to go into emergency medicine? Do you REALLY care about helping people? You need to....forget about saving lives for now, it's mostly about compassion and simply helping people. But if it's really calling to you....you can get your EMT-B through North Seattle Community College, also Edmonds and Everett Comm. College's have course work. You're not going to like the paychecks, neither is your Mom. King, Snohomish and surrounding counties all incorporate the EMS system into the fire departments, so most of the paramedic programs are geared toward the FD's.

The private sector: AMR pretty much has a monopoly on private ambulance service and co-responce with a few smaller companies like Rural Metro.

Check out the Medex PA program at the UofW, hard to get in though, you're Chem degree will help.

I don't know, what's your passion in life?

Everyone here gives exceptional advice because they are exceptional people. Keep asking questions and keep listening.

Mike

Edited by Emergency Laughter
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Welcome to the city Harrison. Mike, thanks for the twitter follow. I love it when celebs follow me.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Welcome to the city Harrison. Mike, thanks for the twitter follow. I love it when celebs follow me.

A celeb? Isn't that some kind of celery? Are you insinuating that I'm a vegetable? I mean, you wouldn't be far off, but, HEY, what's the hardest thing about eating a vegetable?.......getting them out of the wheelchair!

Sorry everyone....Take note Harrison, that's the kind of sick, twisted humor/mind that working in EMS for years will get you...

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now