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South Florida State College graduated 10 emergency medical technicians during an evening ceremony on July 14 in the SFSC Public Safety Auditorium, Highlands Campus, in Avon Park.
Earning their EMT certificates after 16 weeks of training were: Coleton M. Choate Maria Dolores Albarran, Nathan Heaton, Beth Anne Fletcher, Joshua Caleb Mink, Vivia Dianne Nott, Michael G. Isom, Amanda Gayle Tyson, Trenton C. Carlisle, and Stephen Cody Wilson. [Pictured from left to right.]
“You have proven to our faculty that you’ve been successful in the classroom, in the lab, and in the field,” Erik Christensen, dean of Applied Sciences and Technology, told the graduates, with family and friends looking on from the auditorium’s seats.
“Now you’re ready to join the elite world of emergency medical technicians,” Christensen said.
Nott, a DeSoto County resident, received special awards for “Highest GPA for Lecture” and “Highest GPA for Lab.” Isom was presented an award for “Most Heart” for his passion and determination, Richard Shepard, EMT instructor, announced at the start of the ceremony.
Upon completion of the program, graduates are eligible to take the Florida EMT State Board examination.
For the 65-year-old Isom, the graduation kicks off a second career. Isom enrolled in SFSC’s EMT program after retiring from a 30-year stint with the U.S. Postal Service.
“It’s been an amazing 16 weeks learning emergency medical services alongside my peers and under SFSC faculty,” said Isom, who will work for Positive Medical Transport in Highlands County.
Also receiving an honorary certificate was Barrett, a German Shepherd, who attended the course as Tyson’s service dog. Tyson, a U.S. Army veteran who served in Iraq, brought Barrett to the ceremony and accepted the certificate on his behalf.
EMTs function as part of an emergency rescue and transportation team by responding to emergency calls, assessing scenes of accidents, setting priorities for treating patients, and providing prehospital emergency care.
Shepard noted the class of 10 graduates closes a chapter in EMT education at SFSC. They were the last class to graduate under the state rule requiring 250 hours of instruction, Shepard announced during the ceremony. He said all new classes will complete 300 hours of instruction.
For more information about SFSC’s Emergency Medical Technician program and other Emergency Medical Services programs, call 863-784-7272.