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Career and Education Opportunities for Fire Fighters in Bridgeport, Connecticut

For those living in the Bridgeport, Connecticut area, there are many career and education opportunities for fire fighters. There are currently 3,950 jobs for fire fighters in Connecticut and this is projected to grow 9% to 4,300 jobs by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for fire fighters are expected to grow by about 18.5%. Fire fighters generally control and extinguish municipal fires, protect life and property and conduct rescue efforts.

A person working as a fire fighter can expect to earn about $25 per hour or $53,180 annually on average in Connecticut and about $21 hourly or $44,260 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Compared with people working in the overall category of Fire Control, people working as fire fighters in Connecticut earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Fire Control nationally. Fire fighters work in a variety of jobs, including: volunteer firefighter, tiller worker, and apparatus operator.

There are seventy-five schools of higher education in the Bridgeport area, including one within twenty-five miles of Bridgeport where you can get a degree to start your career as a fire fighter. The most common level of education for fire fighters is a post-secondary certificate. It will take a short time to learn to be a fire fighter if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Fire Fighter

In general, fire fighters control and extinguish municipal fires, protect life and property and conduct rescue efforts.

Fire fighters decide on and attach hose nozzles, depending on fire type, and direct streams of water or chemicals onto fires. They also lay hose lines and connect them to water supplies. Equally important, fire fighters have to respond to fire alarms and other calls for assistance. They are often called upon to dress with equipment such as fire resistant clothing and breathing apparatus. They are expected to clean and maintain fire stations and fire fighting equipment and apparatus. Finally, fire fighters ready written reports that detail specifics of fire incidents.

Every day, fire fighters are expected to be able to lift, push and move large and heavy objects. They need to respond quickly in general. It is also important that they exert themselves over and over again for long periods of time.

It is important for fire fighters to spray foam onto runways and rescue aircraft crew and passengers in air-crash emergencies. They are often called upon to examine buildings for fire hazards and adherence to fire prevention ordinances, testing and checking smoke alarms and fire suppression equipment as needed. They also salvage property by removing broken glass, pumping out water, and ventilating buildings to remove smoke. They are sometimes expected to establish firelines to inhibit unauthorized persons from entering areas near fires. Somewhat less frequently, fire fighters are also expected to examine fire sites after flames have been extinguished to insure that there is no further danger.

Fire fighters sometimes are asked to protect property from water and smoke using waterproof salvage covers and deodorants. They also have to be able to take action to contain hazardous chemicals that might catch fire or spill and participate in courses, seminars and conferences, and study fire science literature, to learn firefighting techniques. And finally, they sometimes have to lay hose lines and connect them to water supplies.

Like many other jobs, fire fighters must be reliable and believe in cooperation and coordination.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Bridgeport include:

  • Fire Code Inspector. Inspect buildings and equipment to detect fire hazards and enforce state and local regulations.
  • Fire Inspector. Conduct investigations to determine causes of fires and explosions.
  • Forest Firefighter. Control and suppress fires in forests or vacant public land.
  • Lifeguard. Monitor recreational areas, such as pools, beaches, or ski slopes to provide assistance and protection to participants.
  • Security Guard. Guard, patrol, or monitor premises to prevent theft, violence, or infractions of rules.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Fire Fighter Training

University of New Haven - West Haven, CT

University of New Haven, 300 Boston Post Road, West Haven, CT 06516. University of New Haven is a medium sized university located in West Haven, Connecticut. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,739 students and an admission rate of 68%. University of New Haven has less than one year, bachelor's degree, and postbaccalaureate certificate programs in Fire Protection, Other Specialties which graduated three, two, and zero students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Oxygen Administration: Prepares laypersons and professional rescuers with the knowledge and skills needed to know when and how to use supplemental oxygen and breathing devices.

For more information, see the American Red Cross website.

Incident Safety Officer - Fire Suppression Certification: A fire department incident safety officer's mission is to promote safety standards and practices in the fire, rescue and emergency services community.

For more information, see the Fire Department Safety Officers Association website.

Health & Safety Officer Certification: Standard on Fire Department Occupational Safety and Health Programs.

For more information, see the Fire Department Safety Officers Association website.

Special Hazards Suppression Systems: This certification program is designed for engineering technicians engaged in the detailing and layout and/or installation and maintenance related to special hazards suppression systems.

For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.

LICENSES

Airport Firefighter

Licensing agency: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control
Address: Connecticut Fire Academy, 34 Perimeter Road, Windsor Locks, CT 06096-1069

Phone: (860) 627-6363
Website: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control Connecticut Fire Academy

Fire Service Driver/Operator

Licensing agency: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control
Address: Connecticut Fire Academy, 34 Perimeter Road, Windsor Locks, CT 06096-1069

Phone: (860) 627-6363
Website: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control Connecticut Fire Academy

Fire Service Instructor

Licensing agency: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control
Address: Connecticut Fire Academy, 34 Perimeter Road, Windsor Locks, CT 06096-1069

Phone: (860) 627-6363
Website: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control Connecticut Fire Academy

Firefighter

Licensing agency: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control
Address: Connecticut Fire Academy, 34 Perimeter Road, Windsor Locks, CT 06096-1069

Phone: (860) 627-6363
Website: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control Connecticut Fire Academy

Hazardous Materials Technician (Fire Service)

Licensing agency: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control
Address: Connecticut Fire Academy, 34 Perimeter Road, Windsor Locks, CT 06096-1069

Phone: (860) 627-6363
Website: Commission on Fire Prevention and Control Connecticut Fire Academy

LOCATION INFORMATION: Bridgeport, Connecticut

Bridgeport, Connecticut
Bridgeport, Connecticut photo by Xtremeyanksfan22

Bridgeport is located in Fairfield County, Connecticut. It has a population of over 136,405, which has shrunk by 2.2% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Bridgeport, 151, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Bridgeport are valued at $110,900 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, twenty-six new homes were built in Bridgeport, down from forty-one the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Bridgeport are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, administrative and support and waste management services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 25 minutes. More than 12.2% of Bridgeport residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 4.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Bridgeport is 12.1%, which is greater than Connecticut's average of 8.3%.

The percentage of Bridgeport residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 70.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Calvary Episcopal Church, Golden Hill United Methodist Church and Good Shepherd Christian Church are among the churches located in Bridgeport. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Episcopal Church and the United Church of Christ.

Bridgeport is home to the North Branch Bridgeport Public Library and the Challenger Learning Center as well as Went Field and Johnson Oak Park. Shopping centers in the area include Lafayette Shopping Plaza Shopping Center, Baldwin Plaza Shopping Center and Bayview Shopping Center.