Becoming A Career Firefighter

Firefighting careers are highly competitive and require hard work and dedication to successfully achieve. While there are many routes to becoming a career firefighter, many start in the fire service as volunteers and by going to school and studying a fire science, EMT or paramedic program.

EMT and Volunteering

The typical minimum requirements for becoming a career firefighter are you must be certified as an EMT. Many community colleges offer these types of courses.

Once you’re an EMT, the next helpful step is to become affiliated with your local fire department by applying to become a volunteer firefighter. This will help you see if it’s the job you thought it was going to be by exposing you to the job and what it involves. You don’t have to become a volunteer, but it is very helpful. Click below to learn more about the Clackamas Fire Volunteer Firefighter Program.

Clackamas Fire Volunteer Program



A final consideration is whether you want to become a paramedic or not. Clackamas Fire provides Advanced Life Support because that is what the community needs and deserves. Advanced Life Support is provided by paramedics. Paramedic certification costs around $11,000, takes approximately 1-2 years to complete and is offered by community colleges, hospitals, and medical training companies.

Becoming A Clackamas Firefighter


Clackamas Fire District #1 is an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion. We believe that a variety of backgrounds and experiences best serve our purpose – to protect and serve the residents, businesses, and visitors of Clackamas County. To apply, please visit:



please note that these requirements are subject to change.
  • High School Diploma or GED
  • Valid driver’s license and acceptable driving record
  • EMT Basic, Intermediate, or Paramedic state or NREMT certification
  • Successfully complete Clackamas Fire District #1 evaluation components (see below)
  • Successfully complete Clackamas Fire District #1 post-testing clearance (see below)

Evaluation Components

Minimum Qualification Review
  • Pass/Fail
  • Week of December 18, 2023

The Fire District will invite all candidates who meet the minimum qualifications to participate in the Spark Hire Panel Interviews.

Spark Hire Panel Interviews

  • 50% of the total score
  • Interview invitations – Week of January 8, 2024
  • Interview reviews – Week of January 29, 2024

The Fire District will invite the top 150 candidates from the Spark Hire panel interview to the Live Zoom panel interview.  Active Clackamas & Apprentice Firefighters in good standing will also move forward to the Live Zoom panel interview. 
In accordance with OAR 839-006-0450, the Fire District will also interview each veteran who submits a completed Spark Hire panel interview.

Live Zoom Panel Interview

  • 50 % of the total score
  • Week of February 26, 2024
Eligibility List
  • Candidates receiving a minimum passing score of 75% will be placed on the eligible register for a period of up to 30-months.
  • We are establishing three eligible registers including Firefighter EMT, Firefighter Paramedic, and Firefighter (for current Oregon State Firefighter Apprentices.)
  • Candidates that obtain their paramedic license during the life of the list will be moved from the Firefighter EMT list to the Firefighter Paramedic list during their original testing scores to determine rank placement.

Chief Interview and Physical Abilities Test


  • TBD May 2024
  • Eligible candidates must also successfully complete Clackamas Fire’s Physical Ability Test

Post-Testing Clearance

  • State of Oregon EMT Basic, Intermediate, or Paramedic license or reciprocity with the State of Oregon (click here for more information)
  • In order to qualify as a Paramedic in the State of Oregon, you must also possess an associate degree or higher
  • Successfully complete pre-employment NFPA 1582 physical
  • Successfully complete psychological profile evaluation
  • Successfully pass a background check clearance
  • Successfully complete a pre-employment drug test



  • Incentive Pay
  • Paid Sick Leave
  • PERS Retirement
  • Tuition Assistance
  • Paid Vacation Leave, increasing with length of service
  • Medical, Dental and Vision Insurance
  • Post-Employment Health Plan (PEHP)
  • Deferred Compensation (457b) and Employer Match Retirement (401A)
  • Flexible Spending Account
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Comprehensive Wellness Program

*Subject to IAFF Contract

Preparation for Recruit Academy


Preparation for Recruit Academy Firefighting is a physically demanding profession. Research shows that it requires a high level of cardiopulmonary endurance, muscular strength and muscular endurance. The following information was developed to assist you with physically preparing to become a firefighter with Clackamas Fire District #1.

Preparation for the Career Recruit Academy

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