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January 2009

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1. Fire Prep Topics of Interest – Station Visits

2. Job Announcements by

3. Entry Level Exam Prep


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1. Fire Prep Topics of Interest – Station Visits/Ride Alongs

Ride alongs can help or destroy you! Candidates want the opportunity to do ride alongs as a way of showing interest, gain information for their oral, and can say in their oral they had been to the stations. Often they don't know the culture and etiquette.

We had a candidate in one day for a ride along. He had an opinion on every topic that was brought up, including sports and the current movies. When it came time for lunch, he was the first one on his feet to fill his plate. His mother would have died from embarrassment.

Let me be blunt here. Dummy Up! You don't have enough time or experience to have an opinion! In this situation you have to be humble, have your questions already written down and realize you are a snotty nose rookie. Too many candidates come in wanting the badge so bad they act like they already have time and want to impress the guys with all of their knowledge. BIG ERROR!

This information will spread like wildfire and destroy you with those who will be making the decisions. Too many candidates tank themselves here and they never know what happened. This applies even if you're already a firefighter applying for another department.

Don't take the bait. Even if you have a friend in the station. If the guys want to joke around and play games, don't do it. You are not part of their family yet. You have no time or experience!

Some departments don't allow ride alongs during test time. If you're lucky enough to do a ride along, show up on time with a desert. Home made is best. If it's ice cream, make sure it's the round stuff; not the square stuff. We had so much square stuff during one of test we had a contest in the back yard to see who could throw the square stuff the furthest.

After giving this information at a college fire program a candidate shows up at my station the next day. He didn't make an appointment, have desert, or have any questions ready. McFly?

One candidate told me in another class that he had made an appointment and had to wait a half hour when he got there. Poor baby. Understand this is our home. We spend more time at the firehouse than with our own family. So here you come waltzing into our home not knowing what to do.

If you're fortunate to get a ride along, stay for lunch if offered. Offer to pay your share and do the dishes. Leave before dinner (unless asked to stay) and never spend the night. You might interfere with the kick back time during and after dinner.

Should you go to as many or all the stations in a department? Please spare us this part. Don't turn yourself inside out trying to cover all of the stations hoping the word will get back that you did. It will make you look anal and compulsive. This will raise its ugly head in the psychological test if you get that far. One or two stations are fine. If you try to do them all, it only increases the chances of saying or doing the wrong thing or catching a shift of malcontents that will badmouth you.

If you're bent on doing a ride along, first make an appointment. During test time things get crazy. Be patient. Act like you would if you were the new rookie in the station.


Question: I said that I would always visit a station when I heard a story of a guy who entered an interview and was asked if he had visited any of our stations and did he get the information packet that admin made up? This sounded like a sure fire way to NOT be successful. But after testing a lot it becomes a serious pain in the butt.

I know I will catch a lot of flack for saying that. But think about it, if you take all the tests you can because you really want the job, you could potentially have to visit 3 or 4 different departments in a month. And it is the same routine over time. Call administration for a station numbers, then call the station and explain you would like to visit to ask questions on the dept/personnel/training/equipment.

And, you must not show up empty handed (unwritten rule). Last time we tested at my department we had people showing up left and right. Some brought stuff some didn't. It really did not seem to bother anyone. One guy in particular who sat down with us and really gave me a good feeling did not get hired. I doubt the oral board even had a clue that he visited the station. All the information he gathered did not benefit him because I saw the interview questions. So my question is this. Are we just like the mayor running for office and trying to show our faces around and campaign??? What about the buddy system when visiting stations?? Is this looked upon poorly?? Thanks in advance.

Good Points. Yeah, it's not a day at the beach. But, it can be used in part of your answer on what you have done to prepare for the position; that you have been by some of the stations and what you observed; enthusiasm, skills, dedication, willingness to be of service to those trying to become firefighters. You can also learn something unique about the department that few if any of the other candidates can say in their oral i.e., did you know that San Jose has dry-drum hydrants?

Thanks to Capt Bob Smith, Entry-Level Author and Speaker, for his great insight into the oral interview process. Additional information on Capt Bob's CD/DVD Oral Interview Program can be found at the link below:


San Francisco Firefighter Exam Preparation!

Don McNea Fire School has prepared an in-depth practice examination for those applicants preparing for the San Francisco Firefighter Examination. Click here for all the details and ordering information:


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3. Job Announcements by

About Since 1996, has been providing its members with the most comprehensive and accurate firefighter employment information available. We list complete hiring information and provide links to the Departments' websites and local area.

Every time we post a new listing, we verify the information and verify links to the department. We search newspapers all over the nation daily to provide you with the most current job listings available.

We also provide links to the city in which the department is located. This helps those who are interested in moving to another location to find out about the area. With this tool, you can check out housing, schools, cost of living and even entertainment options before you move anywhere.

Dallas Fire Department

The City of Dallas has announced the next Trainee Fire and Rescue Officer Exam will be held on March 26, 2009. Applications will be accepted beginning January 18, 2009 and will end on February 14, 2009. Additional information on the Dallas Firefighter Examination process as well as the in-depth preparatory packages Don McNea Fire School has prepared to help you gain that ultimate edge over your competition on this exam, click on the link below:

______________________________________________________________ __________

San Diego Fire Department
1010-2nd Ave Ste 400
San Diego, CA 92101

San Diego County

619-544-9351 - fax

Hiring Information:

Position: Fire Recruit

Last Filing Date: February 11, 2009

Employment Information Center (8am-5pm, Monday-Friday)
Civic Center Plaza - 1200 3rd Avenue, Suite 101-A, San Diego, CA 92101

JOBS - City of San Diego Personnel Department
1200 3rd Avenue, Suite 300, San Diego, CA 92101-4107
24 Hour JOBLINE: (619) 682-1011

ANNUAL SALARY (after promotion to Fire Fighter II, including EMT pay): $56,992 - $68,765


IMPORTANT: Please apply promptly. Completed applications must be received by the City of San Diego Personnel Department by 5:00 p.m. on February 11, 2009. If returning your application via the U.S. Postal Service, you should use "Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested" to provide verification of timely delivery. Late applications will be rejected.
Postmarks are NOT accepted. Persons may apply only once during this application filing period.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Don McNea Fire School will be putting together an exam prep package for this exam in the near future. Check our website for all the current information:

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Kansas City, Missouri

The application period for our next hiring list runs from Jan. 18, 2009 through March 2, 2009. This process will establish a two year eligibility list.

To apply, one must:

Be a resident of the City of Kansas City, Missouri at the time of application.

Be a high school graduate (or possess a state-issued GED)

Be 19 years of age by March 2, 2009.

Not have reached your 30th birthday by March 2, 2009.

(Applicants under the age of 45 by the application deadline, who have prior work experience with the City of Kansas City, Mo., Fire Department, may have that time deducted from their age in order to meet the age requirement as listed above.)

Meet specified medical and physical requirements

Possess a valid Missouri driver's license showing current residency.

Applications can be obtained at KCFD Headquarters located at 635 Woodland, Suite 2100 or visit our Application Fair Website to view a list of the Fair locations that will take place in the month of February. You may also apply online at

IMPORTANT NOTE: Don McNea Fire School is developing a custom exam prep package for this exam. Check our website for all the current information:

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Yuma Fire Department
298 West 4th Street
Yuma, AZ 85364

Yuma County

520-343-8608 - fax

Hiring Information:

Position: Firefighter/EMT

Last Filing Date: February 27, 2009

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Bloomington Fire Department
109 East Olive/ Po Box 3157
Bloomington, IL 61702-3157



Hiring Information:

Position: Experienced Firefighter/Paramedic

Last Filing Date: January 31, 2009

Special Instructions: Position open until filled

Requirements: The City of Bloomington Illinois is currently seeking experienced Firefighter/Paramedic applicants. The City of Bloomington is a growing community in Central Illinois 100 miles south of Chicago. There are currently 4 Fire stations with plans to add 2 more in the next 2 years. High School Diploma or its equivalent, Firefighter II Certification, and Illinois Department of Public Health EMT-P license is required.

Must meet minimum visual acuity standards as well as be able to distinguish red from green for color blindness. Must pass essential job functions exam, background investigation, oral interview, polygraph and medical exam, including vision; must agree to be fingerprinted and within one (1) year from probationary appointment agree to live within a 25 mile radius from the intersection of Locust and Main St. in Bloomington, IL.

Starting Salary: $ 47,996.39

Top Salary: N/A

Contact: City Clerks Office
109 East Olive
PO Box 3157
Bloomington, IL 61702-3157

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Indianapolis Fire Department
555 North New Jersey Street
Indianapolis, IN 46203

Marion County

317-327-6090 - fax

Hiring Information:

Position: Paramedic

Last Filing Date: January 26, 2009

Starting Salary: $ 32,302.40

Top Salary: N/A

Contact: Indianapolis Human Resources Department
200 East Washington Street, Suite 1541
City County Building
Indianapolis, IN 46203
fax 317-327-4435 D=631&szOrd

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Mount Pleasant Fire Department
PO Box 745
Mount Pleasant, SC 29465

Charleston County


Hiring Information:

Position: Firefighter

Last Filing Date: February 13, 2009

Special Instructions: Position open until filled

REQUIREMENTS: This position performs routine and specialized duties associated with fire suppression, emergency medical calls, hazardous materials incidents, auto extrication and public relations/education events to protect lives and property in the Town of Mount Pleasant.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: High School Diploma or equivalent and one to three (1-3) years of experience; or any equivalent combination of education, training and experience which provides the knowledge, skills and abilities to perform the essential functions of the job

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Valid S.C. Class E Driver's License, First Responder Certification (or higher medical certification),Firefighter I & II Certification (IFSAC or equivalent), Hazardous Materials Training at Operations Level per 29 CFR 1910.120 (OSHA) and National Incident Management System (NIMS) training 100, 200, 700 and 800.

Starting Salary: $ 26,783.00

Top Salary: N/A

Contact: Town of Mount Pleasant, Personnel Division
100 Ann Edwards Lane
Mount Pleasant, SC 29464
jobline 843-884-2278 1361

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Shreveport Fire Department
801 Crockett Street
Shreveport, LA 71101

Caddo Parish County

318-673-6656 - fax

Hiring Information:

Position: Firefighter

Last Filing Date: February 20, 2009

Special Instructions: Position open until filled

DUTIES: Firefighters with the Shreveport Fire Department are one of the most critical and important employment positions within the City of Shreveport. Firefighters extinguish fires of all types that threaten life and property, perform searches and rescues, provide the primary emergency medical services within the city limits, and assist in educating citizens regarding fire and other safety issues

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Applicants must be U.S. Citizens and at least 18 years of age but not yet attained 29 years of age prior to the conditional offer of employment. Must have graduated from high school or possess a high school equivalent certificate as issued by the State Department of Education. Applicants must successfully pass the Civil Service examination for the position. All applicants must successfully complete all steps of the hiring process in order to be considered for the Basic Academy training which lasts approximately 18-22 weeks. Benefits: Start pay of $ 2029.00 per month increasing to $2404.00 after 1st year. $300.00 per month increase in State Supplemental Pay after one year, additional pay for Associate, Bachelor and Advanced degrees, 10 paid holidays, paid sick leave, vacation between 18 and 30 days per year (depending upon tenure), 100 % college tuition paid, uniform allowance, health/dental insurance and State Retirement. For Benefits/hiring process information contact the Shreveport Fire Department⥙s Training Academy at 318-673-6766.

Starting Salary: $ 2,029.00

Contact: City of Shreveport, Attn: Bobby Scott
Municipal Fire and Police Civil Service Board
505 Travis Street
Shreveport, LA 71101


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Firefighter Applicants Frequently Asked Questions and Answers!

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We hope this newsletter and upcoming editions will assist you in obtaining the best job in the world - a firefighter. We wish you the best of luck!

Don McNea Fire School


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