Just finished getting my EMT license. Now I can start catching up to what I spent and missed earning.
(Yes, I know that the EMTs are supposed to be there to save lives, and that is definitely part of the job. However, I see becoming an EMT as in part a change in driving jobs, from Taxi-related/Paratransit to Medical Transportation. A simple way to calculate it is Fewer Rides, Greater Responsibilities. I’m taking on a responsibility towards my client’s health, as well as a simple getting them from point A to point B. And Ambulances ARE USED in getting people who would have trouble otherwise from one place to another.)
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I’ve been taking EMT class for four months. Four months of Tuesday and Thursday 8am-5pm, missing work two days a week plus a couple other days missed in between for class-related items. Eighteen weeks of missed work days, plus costs:
- Price of class: $650
- Work earnings: $1800 (assuming a post-tax and post-deduction income of $50/day, thirty-six days missed. And that’s conservative, as I often worked more hours than would have been necessary to bring in the mere $50/day, post-deductions).
Total Cost: $2450 (conservative estimate, likely a bit higher)
What I could have gotten instead of taking the class, and how it could have benefitted me:
- My Student Loan: $1,000 would knock off $33.00/year in interest, $2,000 would knock off $66.00/year in interest. Plus I would be that much closer to paying off the debt; getting near the point of my being tempted to use the 401K to knock off the rest of the debt.
- Extra Savings: $750 would expand my emergency fund to three months of $750+, $1500 would give me three months of $1,000+ for emergency needs. While the upper limit would have been merely half the six month cushion most experts suggest, it’s more than many have.
- “New” Car: $2500 would remove the sight of rust on the rear panel near the fuel tank.
- Moped: A $2000 moped would change my gas bill from 3-4 gallons/week to less than 1 gallon/week. From $12-16/week to $4, easy (and conservatively). Savings: $30-50/month (again, conservative).
- New Computer: $1,000 gets my housemate a computer to fit her needs and a screen, $1400 gets me a new iMac and $2,200 gets me a MacBook Pro and the ability to WiFi. No matter what, we won’t need to do both dial-up and broadband (as she’ll have an updated computer able to handle broadband). Savings: 10-15/month (depending on how shift works) plus simplification of stuff.
- Vacations: more earned $$ means chances to skip certain days to do stuff, as well as weekends off (just missed happenings in Detroit and Southeast Indiana because of this).
- Retirement: Having been setting aside 10% of my gross for the past few years, I figure that I’ve lost $250-300 in 401K/IRA money due to earnings missed. It may add up to nothing (or its equivalent, a money that’s worthless) but it may add up to something useful, as we’re still talking 20-30 years before retirement.
- New Lawn Mower: They now have battery operated ones; I could use one of those and mow much quicker, with less worrying about the cord.
- A Mix of The Above: A battery-operated lawn mower, more savings ($750, bring up to 3 X 750), and payments on a new computer would work out well. I can also see other combinations working themselves out; especially if we’re talking about a higher level of earnings in lieu of EMT class.
And yeah, I’m looking towards more $$. That and less time at work. Right now it’s 6 days, 10+ hours/5 days (with a decent amount of work on the 6th day). Makes for earning money, but doesn’t add up to any real free time. Once I can get 2-3 free days, I should be able to find things to do (other than vegetating at the computer) with the time.
I’m also looking forward to earning overtime.
That’s right. I haven’t had a job that paid overtime. I’ve either had part-time jobs, or transportation jobs that were excluded from the overtime requirement. An EMT job pays overtime, and from what I’ve heard a competent worker will ALWAYS be able to work overtime.