Fire Lieutenant Julia Jordano knows a thing or two about firefighting. Not only does she volunteer with Prince William County Fire and Rescue System, but she’s also a lieutenant with the Alexandria Fire Department.
“I am a career fireman. I am also a paramedic and have my nursing degree,” said Jordano.
Jordano started as a junior recruit more than 10 years ago, taking her first EMT class in the fall of 2005 as a teenager.
“When I was a kid I just wanted to do something cool. I had some friends in school who were volunteering, and it seemed fun,” said Jordano. “I was always into medical stuff, being a student athletic trainer, and felt this would help me in college with that degree. Little did I know I would become addicted and make an entire life revolving around the fire service.”
Jordano has spent her entire volunteer career within Occoquan-Woodbridge-Lorton (OWL) VFD.
“I used to be a live-in at 12. That was a lot of fun and allowed me to run so many calls. I gained so much experience being a live-in,” she said.
Jordano found her positions intimidating at first, but she quickly adjusted.
“I quickly learned to work hard, study, show up, and people would take you in. They wanted to feel you out to see if you were here for the right reasons and were going to be a contributing member,” she said.
Jordano recounts the fun during those days, though, as well. “Fun is a mellow way to describe it,” she laughed.
Indeed she enjoyed it so much that she even left her senior prom early to report to the firehouse for duty. Now that’s commitment!
“I don’t think I can discuss the firehouse shenanigans,” said Jordano.
Though she held back on the discussion, she may have noted some to us behind the scenes — possibly involving flour wars and the likes. She quantified it all by saying, “We had harmless fun.”
Jordano did note that it’s not ALL fun and games. There is plenty of training to be done, rules to learn and follow for the safety of everyone, and potential turnover. It’s not for everyone and requires a great deal of passion.
“It’s a huge time commitment, but worth the process,” she said. “You will never find a hobby you love more. You will see life differently. And if you work hard enough and put the time in, you can make this your career, your life.”
Like many others, Jordano mentions the bonds and friendships that are inevitable among the volunteer crew, as well as the large network that naturally occurs.
“You will meet your best friends here, and your networking will be insane. (I know everyone everywhere!),” she said.
Despite the hard work, like others we’ve interviewed on this blog, Jordano encourages everyone with an interest to give volunteering with our team a try.
“You won’t regret it,” she said. “It will be exhausting but all worth it.”
Are you looking for a change? Here in Prince William County, the volunteer departments provide fire and emergency medical services to the County’s citizens and visitors during weekday evenings, weekends and holidays. Prince William County’s volunteer fire and rescue departments are seeking motivated individuals who have the desire to make a difference and provide an important service to their community. Learn more now.
- Posted by ATW
- On June 18, 2018
- 0 Comments