It’s one of the most highly sought after professions for many reasons: the nobility of the work, its physically demanding nature and the days-on days-off rostering, to name just a few.
The desire to be a firefighter certainly isn’t lost on our local population. Every ACT Fire and Rescue recruitment drive is a hugely competitive process that sees between 600-900 applicants all vying for one of 16-18 spots in their college.
Firefighting has long been associated with more the physical aspects of the job, and the requirement to keep fit.
With the next ACT Fire and Rescue recruitment drive set for 4 February 2019, Commander Glenn Brewer says the mental side of the job is just as important.
“We need people from all different walks of life to fill these roles; we also need people to have personal resilience, too. Firefighting is a very mentally taxing.
“Ready, willing and able are the three words we’re asking people to consider when they think about applying.”
ACT Fire and Rescue has been actively trying to increase the number of females within the service since 2015.
“We had a 500% rise in female applicants back in 2015, and we’ve seen that number grow every year since,” Commander Brewer says.
“The last two intakes we’ve had there’s been 25% of women in each college; our target is to have 50% female colleges.”
With so many applicants competing for so few spots, Commander Brewer says they put a lot of effort in to prepare applicants with information and come and try sessions.
“We want people to have a sense of what the job requires, its complexities and how much of a commitment the actual application process and training college is.
“If we prepare people better, we get better applicants, but it’s also a twofold process because people can self-select.
“One of the best ways is to ring up your local fire station and book in a time to come in and have a chat and a tour.”