Well Hi! This is my first post, so howdy to y'all!
Mine is a complicated story..
I grew up in the Chicago area, then moved to Colorado last year and took an EMT course (and I passed, I'm just now a registered EMT-B *yay*), now I'm moving back to the Chicago area (Evanston). As soon as I get back I'll be looking for a job. I'd like to be in an ambulance, but I wouldn't mind an ER tech-type position as well. I know the Fire Lt. in my home-town who will sponsor me to go to Paramedic school next year and after I'm certified I'll have a position available with that Dept. In the mean time though I need to make some money to save up for EMT-P school.
I have a million (or so..) questions that I hope all the more experienced people will be able to help me with.
-What are the best agencies to work for in that area (especially in terms of salary, flexibility, types of calls, ect..)?
-Are there any Hospital-based agencies in the area? Or what are the non-private services (especially that hire EMT-Bs)? (I had my clinicals with Poudre Valley Hospital which had it's own ambulance service that co-oped with the local Fire Dept and I really liked the way that system worked.)
I'm considering even skipping the job search and just volunteering with Americorps for a year.. Would that be a good idea in your opinion? The pay is a stipend of about 800-1100 a month and I would probably work in an emergency preparedness program (for terrorism and disaster events) Would it be beneficial (directly) at all for my EMS career?
-I'm not yet EKG or IV certified, can I and where are places I can certify at?
-How does it work becoming ACLS and/or ATLS certified? Is it a class or course like IV? Where can I find one?
-One thing I really want to do is become a flight medic. What is the best path to accomplish this?
-Long-ways down the road I'm considering the possibility of becoming a nurse or even going on to medical school, again what's the best route to get there?
-Any advice for a fresh green eager-beaver EMT-B?
-Oh yeah, For those that are EMT-B or P with a fire service, how does it work, what is the structure? DO you ride in the truck or on a bus? Are you a Fire Fighter or 'just' an EMT or Medic?
Thanks for your help!