Fire Tech Program Graduate Enjoys Serving Community
Who: Jeremy Michael Jimenez
From: Fountain Valley, CA
Why did you choose SAC?
I was a 17 year-old high school senior when I realized that I wanted to become a firefighter. Santa Ana College offers a great fire technology program.
In fact, my twin brother and I both were enrolled in the fire tech program and were scheduled to go into the Academy but at the last minute he changed his career path and moved toward the teaching profession. Now, he’s a teacher in the program for the emotionally disturbed youth at Fountain Valley High School. He’s also a defensive coach for the school’s freshmen football team.
So what was your major?
I majored in Fire Technology and Public Safety with a minor in Liberal Arts.
And you graduated when?
I was part of the 137th Basic Fire Academy that graduated from SAC in May 2006.
Were you able to get a good job after graduation?
First, I got experience as a reserve firefighter with the Anaheim Fire Department for about a year. Then I was an Auxiliary Firefighter with the Downey Fire Department for about 14 months. In January 2008 I was hired as a full-time firefighter with the Costa Mesa Fire Department.
What do you enjoy most about being a firefighter?
Serving the community, and helping people who depend on me. If I had not become a firefighter, I would probably be a police officer, a teacher, or a personal trainer. I definitely want to be in a profession that helps people, and one that people respect and appreciate.
I also enjoy working with all the great tools and equipment involved in the job!
What is your most memorable event to date that used your training as a firefighter?
About four years ago I successfully performed CPR on a child who was drowning in a swimming pool.
What advice do you have for others who want to pursue a career in firefighting?
Get involved in any and every activity related to firefighting as soon as you can, as much as you can. Volunteer programs such as Reserves and Explorers are great ways to learn and get experience. Spend time around fire stations and take every test and interview you can just for practice, because the more experience you have, the more successful you will be.
And talk to the folks in the Fire Academy at Santa Ana College! The instructors are just great, and they will give you all the information and direction you need.
Was attending SAC everything you thought it would be?
Yes. I learned so much about the fire service, and about the career, and I got to do fun, exciting things. And I made more than 40 good friends!
Can you leave us with a general statement about your plans for the future?
In 10 years I hope to be a well-respected and highly successful captain with the Costa Mesa Fire Department!