EMT, CNA, firefighting courses flourish at SMAHS

By: 
Amy Cherry
Staff Writer

Numerous updates about St. Marys Area High School’s various elective programs – specifically the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Certified Nurses’ Aide (CNA) and firefighter courses – were presented during Monday evening’s St. Marys Area School District Board of Directors meeting.
Nineteen students are enrolled in the EMT program instructed by Cathy Zimmerman, EMT and secretary of the Fox Township Ambulance Service.
As part of the program students are required to complete 200 hours of training. To achieve this the class meets daily as well as one full day a month.
St. Marys Ambulance Association has provided its facility as a training center where students participate in ride-alongs where they are required to obtain 10 patient contacts. Students are typically at the center between 4-10 p.m. to achieve this requirement, in which they put in a significant amount of their own private, out-of-classroom time.
“They spend a lot of time at the station and put in a lot of their own time,” Zimmerman said.
During a ride-along session a student may only have the opportunity to respond to one call or several calls depending on the call volume.
Bert Sorg, board member and St. Marys Ambulance Service manager, said some students have witnessed some very intense situations while participating in ride-alongs.
“Their (students) maturity and respectfulness is above and beyond,” Sorg said.

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