How to Become a Chicago Fire Fighter: Training, Exam Prep and Learning the Ropes

September 3rd, 2009

Exam Chicago fire fighter UnionThe Union of the Chicago Fire Department A career as a fire fighter, although considered stressful, is also extremely rewarding and fulfilling. You will be respected by members of the community, the state and the entire nation. You will be handling dangerous emergency situations and saving lives in the process. If you thrive on excitement and can handle the heat, then this might be the career for you.

If you’re looking to become a Chicago fire fighter then you’ve come to the right place. Below are the basic guidelines to becoming a fire fighter with the largest fire department in the Midwestern United States.

The Chicago Fire Department currently staffs over 4,300 fire fighters and over 600 paramedics. However, when it comes to becoming a member of the CFD, the competition is extremely stiff. They only accept applications during certain times and only a select few are asked to continue on from there.

The Fire Department joins together several other state-wide services including the Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Service and the Fire Prevention, Operations and Support Services. This is because, when a fire or an emergency situation arises, it’s best to be as prepared as possible.

Training and Writing the Chicago Fire Fighter Exam Before you can even apply to become a Chicago Fire Fighter you need to be over 19, be a resident of Chicago (and prove it), and have a high school diploma or the equivalent.

The Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Fire Department has teamed up to create the CPFTA 4-year training program. This program will give you the basic knowledge needed to become a fire fighter. Once you have completed this program, you are eligible to take the Fire Department exam for entry into the Fire Department academy.

To become a Chicago Fire Fighter –do your bestIn order to become a fire fighter you need to take an exam. This exam only comes around once in a while. For example, the last one was in 2006 and the one before that was more than 10 years ago. However, with the baby boomer generation getting ready to retire, there will be more job openings in the near future.

On addition to the exam you also have to pass a physical and a drug screening. You need to be in tip top condition in every aspect. There are certain weight restrictions and if you have any problems with your back, your eye sight or your hearing, you most likely will not qualify. Because being a fire fighter demands 100 percent concentration they want only those in perfect condition.

After the Chicago Fire Fighter Test Once you have determined the results of the test and if you passed the exam, this does not automatically guarantee you a position with the fire department. If you are picked, however, you will undergo a rigorous academy training schedule and be put on probation or volunteer duties until a spot opens up.

The process of becoming a fire fighter for the CFD is long and strenuous. However, once you have completed your time, you will have a career you can be proud of.