The job of a firefighter is one of the most physically demanding jobs in North America. It requires high levels of cardiopulmonary endurance, muscular strength and muscular endurance.
To become an OPFD firefighter, you must:
- Be 18 years of age (you do not have to be an Overland Park resident)
- Explorers Program: ages 14-19
- Have a high school diploma or equivalent
- Have no felony convictions
- Have a valid driver's license and an insurable driving record
- Meet the city's pre-employment requirements relative to background check, pre-employment physical and drug screening and psychological evaluation.
- Not have any members of your immediate family employed full-time or part-time by the city.
- Successfully pass two tests:
- Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT) within the prior year.
- Written Fire Service Entrance Exam (FSEE) with a score of 70 percent or better within the prior two years.
- You can register for a test by calling Johnson County Community College Continuing Education at 913-469-2323. You can also contact the Blue River Community College at 816-604-1000 for the Fire Service Entrance Exam. Contact the Western Missouri Regional Fire Academy at 816-604-1000 for the Candidate Physical Ability Test.
- Firefighter 1 and Firefighter 2 certifications in the State of Kansas or equivalent International Fire Service Training Association (International Fire Service Accreditation Congress - IFSAC) certification.
- The Firefighter 1 and Firefighter 2 certifications can be obtained locally through Johnson County Community College, Kansas City Kansas Community College, Western Missouri Regional Fire Academy at Blue River Community College, or the University of Kansas in Lawrence.
- Emergency Medical Technician Certification in the State of Kansas or National Registry.
- This certification can be obtained locally through Johnson County Community College or Kansas City Kansas Community College.
For an entry level firefighter, the annual salary is $37,476 with a maximum of $66,660, reachable in a salary step plan. The city offers excellent benefits, including health and dental insurance, a defined benefit retirement plan as well as a defined contribution retirement plan.
Firefighters work a 24-hour Berkeley shift schedule: 24 hours on (8 a.m. to 8 a.m.), 24 hours off, 24 hours on (8 a.m. to 8 a.m.), 24 hours off, 24 hours on (8 a.m. to 8 a.m.), four days off. Then the schedule repeats.