Firefighters are responsible for protecting the life and property of the country’s citizens by preventing and extinguishing fires. As part of their job, they are also involved in inspecting buildings, rescuing animals and individuals during emergencies, and administering first aid. If you want to step into this exciting field, then read this informative guide on how to become a firefighter in Colorado.
This article will not only highlight the procedure of becoming a firefighter, but will also mention the training, education, and certification requirements that must be met in order to join this noble profession.
Should I Become a Firefighter in Colorado?
Do you have good problem solving and decision making skills? If yes, then you might be cut out for a career in firefighting.
Since firefighting is a challenging and difficult profession, individuals who want to join this field have to meet a long list of requirements. The table below gives an overview of these requirements.
- Education Required
- Key Skills
- Annual Mean Salary (2020) National
- Job Outlook (2019-29)
- Annual Mean Salary (2020) – Colorado
- Postsecondary non-degree award
- Candidates usually receive long-term on-the-job training.
- Each state has its own certification requirements.
- Compassion, Communication Skills, Physical Strength, Courage, and, Physical Stamina.
Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics
Steps to Become a Firefighter in Colorado
If you have questions regarding how to become a firefighter in Colorado, then this section of the article will answer all your questions. Read it to learn about the steps involved in joining this profession.
Graduate from High School
In order to work as a firefighter in Colorado, you need to have a High School Diploma or an equivalent qualification. Therefore, the first step is to complete high school, after which you can earn a Certificate or an Associate’s degree in Fire Science or Fire Fighting. It is also recommended that you obtain the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification before you apply for the firefighting position.
Start the Application Process
Once you have applied for the job, you will be expected to clear a written test and a Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT). After passing these stages, you will have to appear for a face-to-face interview. If you are able to impress the interview panel, you will be required to undergo further screening, which will include psychological evaluations, a medical exam, drug screening, background investigation, and a polygraph exam. Upon successfully clearing the screening stage, you will be given the appointment letter.
Enroll in the Training Academy
After being hired, you will receive specialized training at the fire academy. The training will focus on teaching you survival and rescue skills. This training will come in handy when you graduate from the academy and start working as a firefighter.
How Long Does It Take to Become a Firefighter in Colorado?
First of all, you will have to complete high school education, after which you can complete a Certificate or an Associate’s degree in Fire Science. The Associate’s degree can take up to two years to complete. It is also advised that you receive EMT training before you start your job application process.
The hiring process is long and will require you to clear a written test, physical exam and an interview. If you are able to ace the interview, you will be required to undergo further checks and screening. Upon passing all these stages, you will be given an appointment letter and will be sent to the training academy, depending on the availability of positions.
What Are the Requirements for Becoming a Firefighter in Colorado?
In order to work as a firefighter in Colorado, you will be required to meet some basic conditions. You must:
- Be a U.S. citizen.
- Earn a high school diploma or an equivalent.
- Obtain a valid driver’s license.
- Have not been convicted of a felony.
- Meet the medical standards and should be in a good physical condition.
*Prospective firefighters might also have to meet some certification and age requirements, so it’s a good idea to consult your local authorities to check the city-specific requirements.
How Much Does a Firefighter Earn in Colorado?
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported that Firefighters working in Colorado earned an above-average annual mean pay of $63,160 in 2020. $61,680 was the annual median salary for the year in the state of Colorado.