Working as a 911 dispatcher with the Provo Police Department, you will be responsible for monitoring multiple telephone lines, radio channels, and computers while dispatching emergency services as needed, including police, medical, and fire.
Competition for 911 dispatcher jobs in Provo can be fierce- last year there were 140 professionals in this field working in the Provo-Orem area alone. To be a successful applicant for these positions it is recommended that you start preparing yourself now.
The following guide will take you through the steps necessary to become a 911 dispatcher in Provo, Utah:
|Consider Obtaining a Degree|
|Apply with the City of Provo|
|On-the-Job Training and Certification|
|Keep Up-to-date in the Field|
Step 1. Consider Obtaining a Degree
The selection process for 911 dispatcher jobs in Provo will require you to demonstrate knowledge of protocols related to:
- Data entry
- Radio operations and transmissions
- Computer Operations
- Law enforcement
- Fire services
- Emergency medical procedures
- Grand Canyon University - B.S. in Justice Studies, and M.S. in Criminal Justice
- Strayer University - Bachelors of Science Degree in Criminal Justice
- Michigan State University - Master of Science in Criminal Justice
- Rasmussen College - Justice Studies Programs offering a wide range of industry-relevant programs
- Utica College - Online Bachelor's of Science in Criminal Justice
In addition to specific 911 dispatcher training you can also study for a degree in an emergency dispatching-related field. Schools offering programs in these areas of study are available online and through at least four campus locations in Provo. Having a degree may help both your short and long-term career prospects, as it is a demonstration of expertise and commitment:
- Emergency management
- Law Enforcement
- Homeland Security
- Public Safety
- Criminal Justice
Step 2. Applying with the City of Provo
You can make an application either online or by visiting the Human Resources Division at 351 West Center. You can start the web application process by creating an account with the Provo City Online Job Application System. Once your application is received it will be screened to see if you meet the minimum qualifications which include the demonstration of a typing speed of at least 40 words per minute.
Your starting salary can range between $1,116 and $1,539 biweekly, and last year the average salary in the Provo area was $37,220. Although 911 dispatchers work through the Provo Police Department, they are hired through the city’s human resources department.
Step 3. On-the-Job Training and Certification
Based on the emergency dispatcher job description, 911 operator training in Provo will include gaining the following certifications:
- Utah Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Dispatcher Certification
- Utah Bureau of Criminal Identification (BCI) Terminal Certification
- Emergency Medical Dispatch Certification
- CPR Certification
Step 4. Keep Up-to-date in the Field
As you gain experience in your new job it is never too early to begin thinking about rising up the career ladder. Besides having a good record of proven skills, the next best thing you can do to increase your speed of promotion is to demonstrate a commitment to continuing adeptness and self-betterment.
This can be achieved by attending lectures, workshops, or other educational events related to your field. Not only will this be good for your career but it will also improve the level of service you provide to the people in emergency situations on the other end of the phone.
Some agencies with continuing education resources include:
- Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
- Utah Chapter of the National Emergency Number Association (Utah NENA)
- Utah Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST)
- International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (IAED)