Got Licensed Almost a Year Ago...Still Unemployed

kanichols14

Forum Ride Along
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0
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Hi, everyone.

This is my first time posting to this website. I got licensed as an EMT-B last July, and I'm still unemployed. There has been one EMT job opening, and it was posted when I was a week away from taking the NREMT, so obviously I got rejected for the position. Now, I'm getting more and more discouraged with every month that passes. I was an impeccable student, did well over the necessary number of clinical hours, got many positive reviews from patients and people I worked with, and passed the NREMT first try in only 20 minutes. I've talked to HR in the hospitals, talked to old educators, talked to people I clinical shadowed with, and they're all telling me the same thing: "There's a job in the works. Just keep waiting." I don't know how much longer I can wait. The next batch of students are going through the program I was in over a year ago, and I'm nervous that they're going to get jobs before I do because they're hot off the press.
I just want to work in the field that I'm so passionate about. I just want to save lives. So, does anyone have any similar issues? Words of encouragement? Advice?
 

ChristineQLe

Forum Ride Along
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1
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It's a numbers game, apply broadly to private ambulance companies to hold you off until the position you want opens up.


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StCEMT

Forum Deputy Chief
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Where do you live? If only one job has opened in almost a year where you live, you might need to expand the area you are looking for work. Have you looked local hospitals? Or Urgent Care type clinics? There are more places to start than just on the road doing 911.

Just a side note, don't get hung up on the saving lives bit. That is a very, very, very small part of what we do.
 

OREMT

Forum Probie
23
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Sounds like you need to start volunteering.

Volunteer until you at least get hired, maybe after as well to keep building upon experience.

I'd like to second that.

I had a hard time getting a job as a new EMT as well; 911 jobs were very competitive and ER tech jobs wanted experience. Volunteering for the local fire department got my foot in the door with experience, and helped me make valuable inroads to the EMS community.

Other options include finding work on a wheelchair van, or with an "event EMT" company. The more time you spend with patients the better. Keep at it though - it can take awhile.
 

MMiz

I put the M in EMTLife
Community Leader
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Welcome to EMTLife!

I'd encourage you to:
1. Network. Whether you use this site, LinkedIn, Facebook, or attend open houses, get out there and actively network. I bet if you were to post where you live a few of our members could point you in the right direction.
2. Volunteer. Not only does it help you network, but often volunteer positions transition into paid positions.
3. Go back to school. Become a paramedic and you'll be in high demand.
4. Move/drive. I drove more than an hour to my EMS gig. If you don't find something in your area, then you'll likely have to move. There are many companies hiring EMT-Basics.

Good luck!
 

CALEMT

The Other Guy/ Paramaybe?
4,491
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If only one job has opened in almost a year where you live, you might need to expand the area you are looking for work.
Move/drive.

I'll be the third person to comment "expand your area and/or move". I've commuted to plenty of jobs and I guess you can say that I commute now (about 20 minutes). I once commuted 300 miles for a job, which was a little extreme but I was making good money. If its a reasonable drive go for it.

Go back to school. Become a paramedic and you'll be in high demand.

This.

It's a timing game for new EMT's. What spots are open whose leaving or retiring. EMT's are a dime a dozen, thats just how it is and if you don't live in an metro/ suburban area then that coveted EMT job can be multiple months or even years away. Expand your "area" and go back to school to get your p-card. At least then you'll be more "marketable" and will have a broader opportunity to land a job somewhere.
 

MikeC

Forum Crew Member
61
0
6
Hi, everyone.

This is my first time posting to this website. I got licensed as an EMT-B last July, and I'm still unemployed. There has been one EMT job opening, and it was posted when I was a week away from taking the NREMT, so obviously I got rejected for the position. Now, I'm getting more and more discouraged with every month that passes. I was an impeccable student, did well over the necessary number of clinical hours, got many positive reviews from patients and people I worked with, and passed the NREMT first try in only 20 minutes. I've talked to HR in the hospitals, talked to old educators, talked to people I clinical shadowed with, and they're all telling me the same thing: "There's a job in the works. Just keep waiting." I don't know how much longer I can wait. The next batch of students are going through the program I was in over a year ago, and I'm nervous that they're going to get jobs before I do because they're hot off the press.
I just want to work in the field that I'm so passionate about. I just want to save lives. So, does anyone have any similar issues? Words of encouragement? Advice?

Our area is hiring EMTs. The one company is starting out at $9/hour. I'm currently getting $9.50. Another company starts at $10/hr. I'm working pretty much every weekend at the moment. Currently working scheduled 65 hours a week in EMS and outside.

Working in EMS is great, but I don't recommend waiting around forever for "work". Ultimately the bills need paid. Working in another industry primarily while doing this on a casual or part-time basis seems the reality. If you can get started out volunteering, that would get your foot in the door also. As with everything, it's about who you know.

EMT should not be done for any type of long-term "career" prospects IMO. It's just not set up for that. It'll be tough supporting oneself let alone a family on an EMT's salary with the current costs of living.
 

Agg04

Forum Probie
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I understand. Its hard for an EMT-B in south Florida to find a job as well. Unless you go to fire and get your medic then you will most likely, eventually, get hired on to a fire department down here. Im hopefully going to start medic in the fall and after I am done and licensed I'm moving to Denver. Where I heard
1. Medics are a lot more needed than EMT-B's and
2. You can make a livable wage as a Medic out there.
You can start off around $18/hr and you can make all the way up to $25/hr. Versus in south florida where if you don't work for a Fire Dept then you will most likely be making $15/hr, if that. I suggest move, or start looking at other places. I know its easier said than done. Good luck!
 

EMS Pursuit

Forum Probie
14
3
3
Yes, accepting jobs in a larger area sometimes is the only solution: Keep positive and stay proactive applying to multiple jobs at once... We do see a good amount of job posts this month.

EMS Pursuit (Fire & EMS Jobs)
 

CWATT

Forum Lieutenant
182
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Sounds like you need to start volunteering.

Volunteer until you at least get hired, maybe after as well to keep building upon experience.

I'm not sure where the OP is located, but many services do not accept volunteers due to "insurance concerns". The position being that you need to be an employee to be insured. Even students need to be insured by their training institution.
 

NomadicMedic

EMS Educator
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I'm not sure where the OP is located, but many services do not accept volunteers due to "insurance concerns". The position being that you need to be an employee to be insured. Even students need to be insured by their training institution.

100% not true. If it were, how would volunteer ambulances services and volunteer fire departments and volunteer search and rescue organizations operate?

Outside of large metropolitan areas, you'll find a myriad of volunteer opportunities, some better than others.
 

CWATT

Forum Lieutenant
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@NomadicMedic Those organizations carry insurance for their members and are good opportunities - yes. I interpreted the Drax's suggestion to be as volunteering with a 'traditional' EMS agency. I've been turned down in the past and the reason cited was insurance / liability.

@ the OP - the best thing I can say is be willing to go where the work is. Also, if you were to take a non-EMS job to pay the bills, I would suggest additional training and certifications that might separate you from the rest of the pack when that position does arise. e.g., PHTLS/ITLS, Neonatal Resusitation (NRP), ACLS, PALS, etc. It with also get you rubbing elbows with other industry personalle and may generate some leads for you.
 

EMS Pursuit

Forum Probie
14
3
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Combining EMS and Volunteer is also a route people take when newer to the job... Working part time as Volunteer Firefighter and Part Time on an Ambulance (Even IFTs) Sometimes is the only way to obtain the hours per month you are looking for. The pay is low however (or non existent with some Volunteer Fire) but it will get your foot in the door. Good luck.
 

NomadicMedic

EMS Educator
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None of the card classes like PALS, ACLS or NRP have any value toward preference in hiring an EMT. They're all far beyond the scope, and in most cases, the understanding, of a basic.

What most people fail to realize is that EMT basic is an entry level position. It's simply a timing issue. If you're available when there is a hole, you'll get hired.
 

Parameduck

Forum Crew Member
57
12
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Look at other jobs that serve the public where you might get to use your skills. Life guard! My little brother got hired onto a pool after getting CPR certified, aed certified and deep water rescued certified. You could probably skip the first two.
 

PassionMedic

Forum Crew Member
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13
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Move.

I know it sounds terrible, but on Long Island NY (where I used to live) you could at least get a job as a transport EMT and get some experience under your belt easily. My old company was hiring EMT's every month at ~$11-12 an hour brand new.

Where I am now we are constantly bringing in new employees as well, with new hire assessments happening about once a month.


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joshrunkle35

EMT-P/RN
583
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Pretty cool that you got licensed in NY. I thought they only offered certification.


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PassionMedic

Forum Crew Member
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It's not a licensure it's a certification in NY, you're correct. I'm not sure I follow if I misled on something there though.


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