Career ladder options


Forum Ride Along
I basically am stuck between wanting to go nursing (clinic) route or firefighting (field) EMS. I am going to complete an EMT program here upcoming in January 2017 and plan to work as an emt, see if I am capable (burnout, stress, etc.) and get my paramedic. So opinions on what route might be better? Advice for firefighting route? In colorado how do you get a position in a department?


Forum Asst. Chief
This is the plan I would follow if I was in your position:
-Take the EMT class asap, get a job immediately.
-Start nursing school for a BSN, continue to work part time as an EMT throughout. This gains you money and experience!
-Finish nursing school and get a job as a nurse.
-Get 2 years of critical care experience as a nurse, make $$$, pay off loans.

From here if you are sick of hospitals and want to pursue the FF/Medic pathway, you can take a 2-week RN-to-Paramedic program:

You can also explore becoming a flight medic/nurse, nurse practitioner, CRNA, etc etc.

If you want to be a medic, go do that. But if you can't decide, at least on paper IMO it makes more sense to go nursing->EMS rather than the other way around.


Nationally Certified Wannabe
^ What he said. Alternatively, once you get RN -> challenge/bridge to medic -> start full-time as nurse, p/t medic. After a few years, reevaluate & either xfer to CCT/flight, stay at the hospital or go fire. Whatever you choose, you don't lose anything. And a bachelor's in healthcare will come in very handy when applying for any position.


The fire extinguisher is not just for show
Or do what a nurse buddy of mine did.... get your EMT, go to nursing school (for your associates), 3/4 of the way through nursing school, start taking firefighter exams. once you pass your NCLEX exam, you can get hired part time as a nurse, and take a break once you get hired as a firefighter while you are going through the fire academy.

That you you will have a decent job to work FT, and a good paying side job to work on your days off (because every FF I know has a side job)