The Emergency Medical Technician/Paramedic program at Arkansas State University-Searcy, a technical campus of ASU-Beebe, has partnered with NorthStar EMS to receive a donation of an ambulance.
The 2005 E-450 ambulance donation is valued between $8,000 to $10,000, compared to the $125,000 cost of a new ambulance. The donation was facilitated by Donald Shull, owner of NorthStar EMS and a member of the ASU-Searcy Paramedic Program Advisory Committee.
The ambulance was previously donated to the Searcy Police Department for reutilization as a security vehicle and had been in storage for several years. Lieutenant Tom McGee, with the Support Services Division of the Searcy Police Department, learned that ASU-Searcy was searching for an ambulance for their EMT/Paramedic program.
“The timing of the donation coincided with the advisory committee’s plan to search for an ambulance and eventually a training house to re-enact the ‘real world’ emergencies for students,” said Patt Cope, director of the ASU-Searcy EMT/Paramedic programs. “This ambulance will provide students with the problem solving, ‘patient in motion’ training that is not easily simulated in a classroom environment.”
Michael Troop, interim director of the Advanced Technology/Allied Health Division, stated “Within the educational field the medical programs are some of the most expensive programs to fund. Educational facilities find it hard to purchase materials and equipment for these programs due to their high cost. Without the assistance from outside entities students may miss out on quality learning experiences.”
Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT’s) and paramedics are part of Emergency Medical Services (EMS). Entrants into the paramedic program must be a licensed EMT. Paramedic technical certification coursework requires 40 credit hours, with 20 additional credit hours required for the Associate of Applied Science in paramedics. Classes begin each fall semester, and continue into the spring semester plus summer hours. ASU-Searcy offers the only paramedic program in the state with night classes.
“We are extremely grateful to our community partners for securing this ambulance for our program. Our EMT/Paramedic students and their future patients will reap the benefits from this wonderful gift,” said Troop.
The ASU-Searcy paramedic program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (www.caahep.org) upon the recommendation of the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professions.
Arkansas State University-Beebe is an operationally separate, two-year institution of the Arkansas State University System. With campuses located in Beebe, Heber Springs, Searcy, and Little Rock Air Force Base, the university offers associate degrees, certificates, and non-credit training for business and industry. The Beebe campus also collaborates with Arkansas State, a four-year university in Jonesboro, to offer baccalaureate and graduate degrees on the Beebe campus.