Flashover Friday

How much should a non- fire service related degree count during promotional time. Should it have any merit at all? Should you even get paid extra for having a non-related degree?


  • HallwaySledge says:

    Oh boy. Here we go. I’m one of those “educated” firemen with a college degree. I earned mine in Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement Administration, with a minor in Industrial Safety. I chose that as my major because inside the College of Law Enforcement there were a handful of fire classes, mostly focusing on arson investigation. At the time I was in school there was no such thing as a Bachelor’s degree in Fire Science, there weren’t even Associate degree programs yet. The only thing close was Oklahoma State’s program. Anyway, I do not get paid anything extra for my degree even though I am told it makes me a better all-around firefighter and perhaps gives me a bit of an edge for promotional opportunities. My department does pay guys with a 2-year Associate’s degree in Fire Science an extra $500, however. Here’s my rub with that. The Associate degrees in Fire Science in my area consist of everything our state Firefighter II curriculum includes plus a smattering from the Fire Officer I. So, if I have to be at the minimum a Firefighter II to even be on the job and I already have my complete Fire Officer I cert and am almost complete with Fire Officer II, don’t I already meet all those requirements? If the Associate’s degree is the base knowledge for being on the job what is the degree giving the department extra? What are they paying for? That’s just my area and my department. Maybe other areas degrees offer more expanded education above and beyond what local firefighters are already being trained to. I don’t know. But around here, I think it’s a joke.

  • anchorpoint1 says:

    Wow Sledge how long ago was that? Just kidding. Our police force had a problem with colleges giving credit for OJE. SO if the work with a psych patient once they got psychology course credit. 3 credit hours in the bank. They fixed that.
    OK, moving on. I do believe a college degree should be required for promotion. Just like in the real world if you want a job you need a degree. It does not prove knowledge, it proves commitment. It shows that you make goals and achieve them.
    Well that was short, Stay safe.

  • Emmit says:

    Yes, a degree should count for something within any career. Higher education degrees often bring a more cognitively developed individual who has a more rounded worldly view and approach to many things in life. One of the many things you’ll learn in (and about) college regards following directions. Often an individual must do their own research (with given resources), develop conclusions and organize them into a project for the given subject and professor. Sure, many people are capable of this away from the colleage setting, but one “learns” to do this in college. We can always find exceptions when we seek them, but in general, college educated individuals bring a more cognatively developed, well rounded and professional individual than those that did not seek a higher level of learning. It is also plausible that college educations can speak to the motivation of an individual that seeks more vs. stops right out of high school or GED. College is not for everyone and college does not define everyone, but there is a reason for schools of higher learning and they should speak for something. With regards to whether or not the degree should be related to the profession, one would hope that it would be the desire of the individual to focus their education in the area they choose to pursue. It’s definately more beneficial and possibly should be used to scrutinize two closely related individuals, but I do not believe it should a singular requirement. A college degree should help you get your foot in the door, but it is the individual that learns to stay inside.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

background image Blogger Img

Marques Bush

Firefighter Basics launched in February 2009 after Founder/Editor Marques Bush was looking for a way to express himself and share his experiences with brother and sister firefighters. Shortly after founding the site Marques spoke with several trusted friends and ask them to come on board and contribute also. Firefighter Basics is a dedicated group of firefighters who strive everyday to practice what they preach about Training, Safety, and Tradition.  We can be reached at firefighterbasics@gmail.com

FE Talk: Humpday Hangout

Jim P.
The World is not on fire.
BRAVO. Very good observations. Thanks for writing this. Decisions/leadership based upon fear or lack of training is unacceptable. These things need to be said, to counteract the attitudes that are trying to influence future generations of firefighters.
2015-03-18 14:39:28
Ret. Capt.
The next big thing…or just another acronym?
I'm not sure how the Portsmouth, VA FD normally operates but that is an embarrassment. I am not understanding any part of why the hose team did not make entry while one other member broke out the window with an extension ladder to provide quick ventilation. From what is seen, and the conditions present, in…
2015-01-16 17:21:54
Met Fan
The next big thing…or just another acronym?
Actually it does not seem to raise the temperatures at the floor in most cases. Do you feel feel different after attack begins? Of course you do. Steam is produced when water hits the fire and you feel the humidity through your gear. This is going to happen regardless of whether the stream entered a…
2014-12-29 02:43:23
Ryan McGovern (Ladder Jack)
Ideology vs Philosophy: Are you Slicing or Dicing in the fire service trends
Marques, As I have been following this debate for the past few weeks, and looking for the best way to respond, I could find no "correct" way to join the conversation without maybe coming off as narrow-minded. The response you have here says exactly what I believe is the best way to approach the SLICER/…
2014-12-03 00:41:24
The next big thing…or just another acronym?
Though hitting a fire from the outside lowers the temperature in the room, it raises it closer to the floor. I've been a firefighter for 14 years and work for an inner city department. You'd better be damn sure there are no victims in the structure anywhere near where those heated gasses are going to…
2014-11-24 17:54:49

Follow Firefighter Basics

FireEMS Blogs eNewsletter

Sign-up to receive our free monthly eNewsletter