Firefighters are responsible for saving people from fire. These experts use various equipment and techniques to put out fire and help people who are stranded in those houses and buildings.
To find out all the details on how to become a firefighter in Illinois, read this article.

Should I Become a Firefighter in Illinois?

  • Education Required
  • Major Requirement
  • Licenses/Certifications
  • Experience/Training
  • Key Skills
  • Annual Mean Salary (2019) National
  • Job Outlook (2018-28)
  • Annual Mean Salary – Illinois (2019)
  • High school diploma
  • Not Applicable
  • Required for EMT positions
  • On-the-job training
  • Problem-solving Skills, Decision-making Skills, Compassion, Physical Strength, Physical Stamina and Courage
  • $54,650
  • 5%
  • $58,170

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Firefighters play an essential role in this society. They are employed in various industries but mostly they work for public agencies. These professionals have to respond to emergencies at all times and in all kinds of weather.

Career Outlook

As reported by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment opportunities for firefighters are expected to grow 5% from 2018-2028. These professionals respond to emergency calls and try to put out fires as soon as possible. Even though the incidents of fires have reduced, the demand for these professionals will continue to increase in future.

Steps to Become a Firefighter in Illinois

Get Education

Students are required to have a high school diploma or a GED. It is beneficial for them to choose subjects like writing, mathematics and reading.
They also have to obtain the Illinois Emergency Medical Technician Paramedic (EMT-P) certification. A few students take the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technician (NREMT) course to receive medical training.

Get a Degree

Some students choose to get a college degree even though it is not mandatory. A few choose to complete a 2-year associate’s program which includes courses, like hazardous materials chemistry, fire protection systems and fire protection systems, etc.
While others, who opt for a 4-year bachelor’s degree, study courses, such as fire investigation and analysis, fire scene reconstruction and building reconstruction, etc.

Complete the Necessary Requirements

Aspiring firefighters have to complete a few necessary requirements to be able to work in Illinois. They have to pass the Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT) and must know how to climb ladders. They should have a vision of 20/20. At the time of applying, a candidate should be of 20 years of age; while at the time of appointment, he should be 21 years old. Once students fulfill these requirements, they have to submit their application. They will be required to pass a written exam, drug screening, psychological interview and background investigation if they get selected.

Get Training

All the candidates have to receive training from a fire department academy. During this process they learn multiple tactics and ways to deal with emergencies. This program is usually a combination of practical and theoretical learning and is very useful for students in their professional life.

Advance your Career

Those professionals who want to advance their career obtain advanced training and education. The process of gaining extra training allows them to get more experience and increases their chances of getting promoted to higher positions. Candidates who want to get promoted to better positions should have a bachelor’s degree.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Firefighter in Illinois?

Obtaining a GED or a high school diploma is the foremost step to becoming a firefighter in Illinois. Candidates have to obtain medical training and get an Illinois EMT-P certification. They have to clear the required exam. Once the requirements are completed, students can apply at a fire academy and start their on-the-job training.

What Are the Requirements for Becoming a Firefighter in Illinois?

Following are the requirements to become a firefighter in Illinois:

  • Fulfill the minimum age requirement
  • Get a high school diploma or GED
  • Must be a US citizen
  • Have to pass the required exams
  • Must be of a good moral character
  • He/she must have a valid driver’s license
  • Must have sound overall health
  • He/she must have an Illinois EMT-P certification
  • Pass the post-application process

How Much Can I Make After Becoming a Firefighter in Illinois?

As per the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, firefighters working in Illinois were getting an annual mean salary of $58,170 in 2019.