EMT as a career

Sinatrix

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Hello everyone! This is my first post here, so hopefully it is in the right spot. Anyway, I am 25 and currently residing in Houston Tx. I was a police officer for about a year when I turned 21 but left because of personal/political issues and beliefs. I returned to school, and have since completed my associates of arts degree, and I am currently working on my bachelors in BCIS. I still have a few years left until its completed. I work part time at a doctors office (clerical work) and both of my parents work in the medical field (nurse and pharmacist). I have finally realized that working at a desk part time and going to school full time is getting old (part of the reason I went into law enforcement was so I wouldn't be sitting at a desk lol)

To my point, EMT has always been something that has interested me, but I have never pursued it. At this point in my life, the thought of training in and working as an EMT seems like a smart move. I would plan to train in basic, and then work on completing the paramedic training in the years to come. I just wanted some input from others here. I have no real worthwhile experience, and once I am certified I would want to work full time. Is this a reasonable plan? What are you alls opinions? Thank you all for your input. Oh, and I am in a serious relationship, and my SO handled me working night as a LEO as supportive and well as one could, and fully supports EMT work, so that is one less concern :) Thank you again for your responses.
 

bigbaldguy

Former medic seven years 911 service in houston
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In some parts of the US this would be a bad idea because it is so hard to get a job as a basic but I think it's a viable idea in Houston. You won't make much money at it but if you are just thinking about doing it while you're in school I'd say give it a shot. Obviously you'll have to figure out how to fit the training into your current schedule. HCC has a good basic program as does lonestar.
 

jonathanrs89

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You probably heard it a million times, if you love EMS, youll love it, no matter the pay. I am an EMT-B, I work in this and i cannot tell you how much I like it. Some patients I have taken are blind, and they still remember me next time I come around. Its a great feeling. With your background as police, i would recommend looking into EMT-Tactical after getting your Medic.
 

FourLoko

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You left a job I'd kill for. Not literally of course but you're nuts.

As much as there are annoyances with staff, dispatch, traffic etc I still like the work. Too bad the pay is garbage.
 

PotatoMedic

Has no idea what I'm doing.
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You left a job I'd kill for. Not literally of course but you're nuts.

Come to washington. the WSP is hiring like crazy right now.
 

mycrofft

Still crazy but elsewhere
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Research for local job market. I'd base my career change more upon availability nowadays than on "what my heart wants", because your heart doesn't fill your stomach or keep you housed. You can get EMT trining later on if you still want to.
BUT, maybe a service would be very happy to hire a former LE if your exit was amicable.
Check it out.
 

NYMedic828

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Would never ever ever ever ever ever leave a PD career for EMT, an unstable, low pay proffession.

EMS is a slow progressing service with little room for advancement. Jobs are frequently unstable and you can't beat the benefits and secure future that come with a job like a police officer.

If it makes you happy so be it Godspeed but honestly I'd say it was a terrible move.

If your personal beliefs and views are that strong you will find problems every where you go. EMS supervisors love to play the favorite game.
 
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NomadicMedic

I know a guy who knows a guy.
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Would never ever ever ever ever ever leave a PD career for EMT, an unstable, low pay proffession.

EMS is a slow progressing service with little room for advancement. Jobs are frequently unstable and you can't beat the benefits and secure future that come with a job like a police officer.

If it makes you happy so be it Godspeed but honestly I'd say it was a terrible move.

If your personal beliefs and views are that strong you will find problems every where you go. EMS supervisors love to play the favorite game.

This is simply not true. In many places, EMS is a county service, with pay and benefits similar (if not better) than some Police Departments. Would I leave a police career for a job with a private EMS company? No way! Would I leave a police job for a paramedic position with a progressive third service? Absolutely.

You've got to do your research, find a department that can pay you what you deserve. And, you need to look out for your future. A strong pension, good health benefits, a clearly defined promotional ladder and education opportunities and reimbursement are some things that I would look for in a department.
 

NYMedic828

Forum Deputy Chief
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I work for FDNY my benefits are pretty unbeatable but a fireman still has better benefits.

Regardless it doesn't make up for the fact that a fireman or cop still makes $30,000 a year more than me at top pay with more advancement opportunities.
 

Sandog

Forum Asst. Chief
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I work for FDNY my benefits are pretty unbeatable but a fireman still has better benefits.

Regardless it doesn't make up for the fact that a fireman or cop still makes $30,000 a year more than me at top pay with more advancement opportunities.

We call em firefighters now :)
 

TransportJockey

Forum Chief
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Firemen, firefighters, hosemonkeys... same difference :p
 

NomadicMedic

I know a guy who knows a guy.
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Funny, I have a good friend who was an FDNY firefighter and he always referred to the guys as "firemen". :)
 
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Sinatrix

Forum Ride Along
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Wow, thanks for all the responses and input. Just to be clear, I did not leave police work to go EMT, I left because it was not a job I wanted to pursue. Looks like I'll be meeting with some advisors and try to figure out a path. At the very least I could volunteer with the basic until I find work, and keep my current job while finishing up school. Thanks again for the advice
 

Handsome Robb

Youngin'
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Medic2409

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Ok, back to the topic. ;)

FWIW, I know of more than one officer here in Texas that has decided they'd be better off in the Fire Service.

Straight up EMS right now is a gamble, honestly. There are some good places that will take care of you, but by and large this is a cutthroat business, at least in my experience.

Best of luck to ya!
 
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Sinatrix

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Thanks. I mainly wanted to get the EMT-B in hopes to land a part time (full would be better) and continue school. From the sounds of it, seems like I'll be lucky to get volunteer work lol. Guess I gotta bite the bullet, give it a shot and hope for the best. I guess with volunteer work i could at least get a feel if I would want to pursue the paramedic plan.
 

Medic2409

Forum Lieutenant
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By all means, bite the bullet and give it a shot, hopefully it'll work out. My only other advice would be to keep a backup plan just in case.
 

dewey

Forum Probie
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EMS in Houston is a job, not a career IMO. Do to an oversaturated market, the starting pay rate might actually be decreasing. I'm still relatively new to the field (7 month IFT), but the outlook is grim. A lot of the 911 services are having to start doing transfers to pay the bills, but are not increasing their pay. I was searching today, and found an opening that has starting pay @ $13 an hour for paramedics.

As a new basic in Houston, expect $8-$10 per hour. There are services that pay better, but those jobs are few and far between. As a job to gain experience/open up other opportunities, EMS is a great idea. As a career....not so much.
 
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