| August, 2020 Student Highlight
Jonathan Gonzales - Las Vegas, Nevada
Dean: How old are you Jonathan and where do you live?
Jonathan: I am 36, and live in Las Vegas, Nevada. I’m an EMT in the city of Las Vegas. I’m a BLS, CPR, AED, Stop the Bleed and First Aid instructor for ASHI and AHA. I also work as a Technician in mobile urgent care with Doctor Nurse Practitioner, Physicians and Physician Assistants. I’m enrolled in my AEMT course and I completed Tactical Medical Practitioner course from (SOAR) Special Operations Aid and Rescue. Throughout the past couple of years, I have accumulated various certifications both in EMS and Fire. Ranging from FF1, FF2, HazMat, Tactical Medical Practitioner, Emergency Vehicle Operator, ICS 300, and Vehicle Extrication to name a few.
Dean: Why do you want to be a firefighter and what draws you to the fire service?
Jonathan: I love being a firefighter Because of The feeling of “self-fulfillment” and never-ending growth. Even though helping people is a normal routine for me, knowing that the position and agency I would work for is doing this on a day to day basis is enticing to have as a career. Personally, the mystery of the next call, being able to troubleshoot and figure out an issue with a like-minded team. While helping and assisting our community is far more enticing anything I have encountered.
Dean: What is your biggest accomplishment up to this point in your life?
Jonathan: One of my greatest achievements was that, I created world’s first protein ice cream! WheyCream. (Long learning experience from this). I learned an extreme amount of everything while in this phase. It helped me develop so much character, grit and mental strength. Even though I wasn’t as good in business as I wanted to be, I’m thankful for the experience alone.
I have a family of 5 and I love spending quality time with my 3 kids (16 Janessa, 6 Jaleeyah, 5 Xavier) and my wife of 19 years (Vanessa). Together we have gone through various ups and downs, and we’re extremely dedicated and loyal to one another. We have a goal and even though personally I’m the one going through the courses and process of trying to become a full-time firefighter. My family feels every bit of pain, achievement, agony and emotion. Together we always schedule and accommodate time to make every bit of learning, course, class, training happen.
Dean: What are some hobbies and interests you enjoy?
Jonathan: I love studying fire science and technology, I have a goal of becoming a captain for a fire agency, and to be the best I can be at it. I also plan to retire as an arson investigator. I geek out on how Fire can be controlled and the chemistry aspect of it. I love doing physical training and working out. I have been practicing Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai and Wing Chun for about 15 years and continue to do it as a hobby. I have my own PT gear and a BlastMask that I use in combination to help me prepare for a fire academy, meanwhile doing mock fire training drills and evolutions.
Dean: What kinds of volunteer/community service do you enjoy participating in?
Jonathan: I am a volunteer, and have donated time to the Burn foundation, St. Jude kids Cancer charities, Cancer bike rallies, Various High school cheerleader team fund raisers, High school Book club fundraisers, and I also Volunteer as a FireFighter EMT for Mt. Charleston Fire Protection District.
My family owns a chain of ice cream shops here in the city of Las Vegas and we have always formed charities and donated as much as possible to majority of cancer foundations, as well helped many schools in donations. On a personal note, my younger sister was diagnosed with a rare cancer at a young age, and that hit home for all of us. Being in such an awful position taught us many things, and one of those was seeing the love and help from different parts of communities and strangers helping us get through it all. I for one hold that dear to my heart and am forever grateful. That is another driving factor of why I love to serve our community. I’m excited and looking forward to complete an agency's fire academy, starting my rookie year and earning my badge as a full time FireFighter!
Check back each month as we highlight more students from the Firefighter Oral Interview Academy.