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veterans points

I recently ended my hitch in the military, with a honorable discharge and will be taking my first test in sept. how much help will the 5 vet points help.

[color=Red]Veterans points are always good for the candidate. If you have done your homework and prepared yourself for the test the veterans points can put you to the front of the line. If the points are assessed on the written test it could be the difference between passing and not passing. If the points are assessed at the end of the test for finial score it could mean the difference between band 1 and band 2. I guess what I am saying is the extra points are only as good as the person taking the test. Do well and add your veterans points you win. Do poorly and your veterans points might only help you pass the test or make the list. Good luck and thanks.[/color]
Best regards and Good luck, Craig Freeman

So, my husband is in the US Marine Corps currently and he is VERY interested in becoming a fire fighter when he gets out of the service in Oct. 2003. Could someone please explain to me what the "veterans points" are and how you obtain them?
Also, we are both very confused about the steps to take in order to get this career. I know it is looked upon highly if you have completed the fire academy AND have your Paramedic license, but what is the likelyhood of getting a job right away if you have just completed the fire academy? My husband doesn't want to get stuck (lack of a better word) in an abulance doing medical stuff all the time.
Another question, sorry. So, my husband would just have to go to Riverside Community College (an example) and get a certificate of completion for the fire academy and complete the paramedic license exam and then does he just go to a variety of fire stations and apply or is there one spot to apply for ANY fire station in that county? This is all new to me and him so please forgive me if I sound stupid.

Thanks for the help, it is greatly appreciated. :)

Veterans points are just that ie. points added to testing/interview scores for having served our county in the military. Not all governmental fire agencies give Veterans points in all exams. For those that do, the points actually added to your score can vary. Also, you may not be awarded points unless you served on active duty during certain times. This system is agency specific meaning just about everyone has a different system.
As for applying in California, each fire agency either has a Personnel/Human Resources department that handles the recruitment. Applicants are tested, rated and place on an elgible/hiring list. The list is only in effect for a certain period of time which can be six months to two years. However, that time can be shorter or longer. Just because you make the hiring list does not mean you will be offered a job. While there are many fire departments in Riverside County, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has the contract and is, in effect, Riverside County Fire Department. Go to the CDF website and you can check the employment status there. CDF&FP is state wide and if and when you make the list, a job offer could come from anywhere in the state. Riverside County Human Resources does do SOME hiring for non-fire suppression positions.
FYI: Ambulance work/medical calls are about 75-80% of calls for the fire service.
Best wishes

This message was edited by tomdeltazulu on 11-4-02 @ 4:02 PM

Its unfortunate that your husband doesn't want to work on an ambulance, because the truth of the matter is that a large portion of the Firefighters in the entire bay area came from the ambulance ranks. Not a week goes by that I don't hear about a co-worker of mine getting hired by some public service agency. Last week someone got hired by PD. And we look to lose a bunch to Alameda County Fire here in a little bit.

- Someone who works on an ambulance

The best thing your husband can do is to take fire science courses. Since he doesn't get out of the military until 10/03 he has some time to knock out some classes BEFORE he gets out.
There is a post on the board that states that Alan Hancock College has internet courses. This is a godsend for someone in his position. Hopefully he has access to a computer. If so he can take a bunch of these classes before he gets out of the military.
Additionally, any related training that he can get the military to put him through will be a big help. These include foreign language (spanish), Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), confined space awareness or hazardous materials awareness just to name a few.
Does he need to become a paramedic? No
What he does need to do is plan on going through a basic junior college level fire academy. Before he goes through the academy he needs to have his basic "core" classes completed. These are the classes offered over the internet that I spoke of earlier.
Once he finishes the prerequisite core classes he is able to go through the basic fire academy (usually 10 - 14 weeks full time).
Once he completes the academy, he takes exams for individual fire departments.
Sounds like a lot of work (and it is) however, military men and women do extremely well in the fire service.
LA County and Long Beach will be testing in the next couple of months. They only test every 4 - 6 YEARS. He should call the respective departments and put in an interest card. THESE ARE TESTS THAT HE MUST TAKE. Both departments hire hundreds of new firefighters. Eventhough he is in the military today, when they come around to hiring him he will be out. If he still has a military commitment, the department will allow him to waive the academy and go into the next one. I hope this helps.

Paul Lepore
This message was edited by Paul on 1-20-03 @ 5:50 PM