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Searching, interviewing for EMT-B employment

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Just got my NREMT and am searching for employment as an EMT-B. Wondering if anyone can give tips on searching for the best job and interviewing.

I have done some ride time both private and with Chicago Fire Department but we were not given any tips on interviewing.... thanks all!

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Well I do not know what the market is like in the Chicago area, but from what I can tell in most of the country it is nearly impossible to get a job as an EMT-B. So unless, you know someone that is hiring, I would try these tactics:

1. Go back to where you third rode, see if the crew you rode with will put in a good word.

2. Consider one of the wheelchair van/dialysis companies and go to work there, or find an ambulance service that provides that service and start in that division.

3. Consider dispatching as a way to get your foot in the door.

4. Volunteer somewhere so that you can build relationships, it isn't what you know, it is who you know.

5. Consider some "tech" jobs in a hospital.

6. Go back to school and get your intermediate or paramedic certification.

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Well I do not know what the market is like in the Chicago area, but from what I can tell in most of the country it is nearly impossible to get a job as an EMT-B. So unless, you know someone that is hiring, I would try these tactics:

1. Go back to where you third rode, see if the crew you rode with will put in a good word.

2. Consider one of the wheelchair van/dialysis companies and go to work there, or find an ambulance service that provides that service and start in that division.

3. Consider dispatching as a way to get your foot in the door.

4. Volunteer somewhere so that you can build relationships, it isn't what you know, it is who you know.

5. Consider some "tech" jobs in a hospital.

6. Go back to school and get your intermediate or paramedic certification.

That all seems to be really good advice. I'm not sure about the dispatch thing, but that's only because I haven't even considered it an option for me. Everything else though boils down to networking. If you have people who are willing to vouch for you as a person and as a worker, you're miles ahead of the list of randoms they have to interview.

I'm not sure how close you are to the nearest volunteer service, but definitely consider that an option. Sure, you'll have to work elsewhere to make your money, but you'll probably have to have a part time job to support yourself as a basic anyways (or so I'm told). Number one, it gets you experience, and number two, it opens up educational opportunities (some places can get you a grant to get your medic training).

Hospital jobs are another route. I know in Michigan, having your EMT-B qualifies you to work as a patient care tech, ER tech, nurse's assistant, and I think OR tech.

Last, but certainly not least... find out how many people work at your local firehouse and take them coffee+donuts, pizza, burgers, or some other sort of treat. Introduce yourself, let them know you're a recent EMT-B "grad", let them make fun of you for a bit, and just explain the situation. You've got little experience in the field, and you wanted to come check out the real world, see some trucks, meet some people, and maybe get a little advice. See if they'll take you on a tour of the firehouse. See if they'll let you look at the ambulance (BLS and ALS trucks). See if there is anything you can do for them, like maybe hang around and clean stuff up for them. Don't ask, but maybe one day while you're there, they might let you ride along on a call. If you don't think that works, it's how one of my firefighter friends got a job with Detroit FD right out of the academy.

Just get your name out there, prove to a few professionals that you're not a whacker, and "you'll go far, kid".

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6. Go back to school and get your intermediate or paramedic certification.

Oh this is hard to say. Gulp. What crotchity said.

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I plan to apply to paramedic school this spring actually. Sadly, fire house options are out. Even volunteer. I am over the age limit for fire departments in the Chicagoland area. 95% of them require you to be a Firefighter also. My goal is to get on with Chgo Fire Dept as a paramedic, no age limit there and you don't have to be a FF.

I do have some friends with connections for private ambo's. I have applied to the them, ER's and am looking for anything in the private sector, so hopefully something will pop up.

Thanks guys for the input!

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I have been searching for a paid EMT gig for the last few months, even with several unsolicited recommendations and referrals, I'm working an non ems gig to get paid... and the medic classes were all full this year. Best thing to do aside from getting into paramedics, volunteer to get experience, best thing I ever did.

Oh, also if you are on twitter follow: https://twitter.com/#!/GetEMTJobs

And I'm not giving up on the paid gig, just trying to be realistic. :) Good luck

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