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MAC, WCAD partner on EMS education programs

Mineral Area College and Washington County Ambulance District are partnering on EMS education starting this fall. Pictured from left are Roger McMillian, MAC dean of Career and Technical Education; Darick Day, WCAD director of Clinical Services and MAC lead paramedic educator; Angie Erickson, MAC director of Allied Health; Justin Duncan WCAD administrator and MAC director of EMS Education; and Sadonya Suttles, MAC simulation/lab coordinator.

Mineral Area College’s (MAC) Department of Allied Health will look a bit different this fall as they begin a partnership with Washington County Ambulance District (WCAD) to administer EMS Education Programs at the college’s main campus.

This is a collaborative agreement between the two organizations with the ambulance district ensuring a qualified program director who will provide oversight to the EMS programs, as well as a lead paramedic program educator. MAC will provide the college resources, the necessary instructional equipment, adjunct instructors and clinical instructors.

Justin Duncan is the administrator for WCAD and will serve as the director of EMS Education for MAC. Darick Day, WCAD director of clinical services, will serve as the lead paramedic program educator for MAC. Collectively, Duncan and Day will provide oversight and guidance for the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) courses.

Duncan explained that both EMT courses and a paramedic program will be offered at the college, allowing opportunities for students looking to get their start in healthcare as well as those looking to further their career.

“A certified EMT gains access to entry-level employment opportunities in emergency medical services,” Duncan said. “Many EMT’s will then choose to continue their education, enhance their marketability and increase their earning potential with a paramedic license.”

The EMT training is a semester-long course that, upon successful completion, allows the student to sit for national testing and then obtain a state license as an EMT. The EMT course is offered both fall and spring semesters with day and evening options available. Enrollment is open now for fall classes which begin August 19.

The paramedic program is an intense 18-month program. The applicant must hold a current EMT license and complete two prerequisites to meet the requirements for application. Upon successful completion, the student is allowed to sit for national testing and then obtain a state license as a paramedic. The 2020-2021 paramedic program will begin accepting applications this month.

Day said the partnership is timely as agencies throughout the United States are seeing a shortage of licensed paramedics. Job outlook data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ 2016 report indicates the EMS field as a whole is expected to grow 15 percent by 2026.

“We are excited and beyond proud to begin this journey with MAC,” Duncan said, “Our goals are simple: provide quality education, give people opportunities to better themselves, and ensure competent healthcare providers that are job-ready upon course completion or graduation. These goals align with those of the college and we have been welcomed into the MAC Allied Health family with open arms.”

For more information about EMS Education Programs, contact the Department of Allied Health, 573-518-2172 or check out www.MineralArea.edu.

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