Raleigh Fire Department Begins Recruitment Drive
Being a first-responder can be a counter-intuitive experience. When the alarms sound for most people, it is an indicator to run away. For first-responders, it is a reminder that they have chosen to run toward the danger.
For the City of Raleigh, recruiting, training, and retaining capable people for those first-responder jobs is a mission-critical responsibility. When people in distress call 9-1-1, a fast and capable response is not a choice, it is simply the way things are done.
During the month of November, the City of Raleigh Fire Department will accept applications for firefighter recruits. Successful applicants must complete the Fire Academy and become state certified as an Emergency Medical Technician.
According to Captain Jamie Hill, academy coordinator at the Keeter Training Center, candidates will be given a written test, a physical agility test, and an in-person interview.
“We evaluate them on all phases,” he said. “When we interview candidates, we’re obviously looking for someone who is dependable. But more importantly, there is a certain type of person who wants to be a firefighter. I think everyone knows that they aren’t going to get rich doing this job. The people who apply are people that want to help others and give back to their community. What we do isn’t always glorious. Helping people and serving our community is just part of the job.”
For Probationary Firefighter Robbie Jones, his career with the City of Raleigh is just beginning. But his efforts in the community are a continuation of his commitment to serve. A seven-year veteran of the Army National Guard, Mr. Jones said that the idea of giving back to his community drew him to begin his career as a firefighter.
“It’s the idea that someone on their worst day can call for help and we’ll respond,” he said. “That’s what drew me in and made me want to do this.”
For Mr. Jones and his fellow probationary firefighters, the first steps were taken during a 32-week training course at the Keeter Training Center. Firefighters learn to tackle challenging terrain, battle deadly fires, and most importantly, they learn to come together as a team.
“The instructors were motivated,” he said. “They know that seven months later, they could be riding the trucks with us. We all started the academy as perfect strangers. But at the end, we all had a new group of brothers and sisters. These are the people that we’re going to be living with. Our lives depend on one another.”
The family atmosphere of the Fire Department is another strong draw for firefighters like Mr. Jones. During demanding shifts, firefighters rely on one another for support.
“Knowing that someone else is there makes it easier,” Mr. Jones said. “If something happens, you know that someone has your back. They went through the same training and they are going to help.”
The Raleigh Fire Department will take applications for the position of Firefighter Recruit until Nov. 30 at 11:59 p.m.
The Candidate Selection Procedure Manual should be downloaded and read before applying for Firefighter Recruit. The manual describes all requirements (application paperwork, exams, etc.) needed in order to complete the process.
Applications must be submitted online. They will not be accepted in person, or via fax or email.
For more information, contact
- Keeter Training Center, 919-996-6395