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As soon as I was legitimate in the United States I scrolled through "Indeed" daily looking for a new job. Having spent almost a year on the doss, I needed to get out and join the working world again. America, the land of opportunity. But what did I want to do?


Oil terminal operator, been there got the t-shirt. Office administrator, 9 to 5, absolutely not. Data-entry, work from home? Then I won't meet anyone. Smokechaser?


Apply now!


I hadn't a clue what the role was, but it sounded interesting and had a cool title. It was also something I would never have had the opportunity to do back home. That's all I wanted, a completely different job where I could learn new skills, even at my age. I completed the required week-long fire training course and passed the work capacity test which consisted of carrying a 25lb pack and walking for 2 miles under 30 minutes.


Smokechasers are emergency intermittent wildland fire fighting assistants. When I called my Mam to try and explain the job to her, she shocked me by responding "oh your Dad was one of those"! I couldn't believe that she knew what it was but also that I was unwittingly following in my Dad's footsteps many moons later, in a different country. Things happen for a reason as they say. There was no rhyme or reason for me to choose Smokechaser from the many jobs posted other than it sounded cool. My Dad was cool. That's reason enough for me.


My uniform is the famous yellow shirt and green pants, the same as is worn by the Hotshot crews. I get to update the Smokey bear signs. I get up close and personal with the air tankers and helicopters used for wildland fire fighting. I work with amazing, experienced fire leads and ride around in a fire truck waiting for the call of fire.


I've yet to experience the big one but I'm trained and ready for when it does happen. I have the coolest job I've ever had, and I love it. I received my first American pay cheque the same day as I left my last job in Ireland exactly one year ago.


It's never too late to change direction. Never too late to try something completely out of your comfort zone. It's never too late to take a chance. Never too late to find a job you love.


Smokey says, "Only you can prevent forest fires".


Only you can change your life. All you gotta do is Apply now.





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