EMT Program Named Best ‘Hands-on’ Course in Nation

Firefighters remove actor from bus that is rolled over on its side for training incident.
First responders practiced their response to a simulated bus rollover incident on campus. (Gregory Urquiaga/UC Davis)

The UC Davis Fire Department EMT certification class has been named the best hands-on training in the nation, recognition for a course so popular that the most recent group filled in 40 minutes with almost no marketing.

“That program every quarter has about 400 people on the waiting list,” said Fire Chief Nate Trauernicht. “It truly is an amazing program.”

The recognition came last month from The Balance Careers, which named the course to its list of the seven best EMT certification programs in the nation.

“UC Davis offers engaging lectures and skills practice sessions involving topics such as bleeding control, airway management, triage, and emergency transportation,” the publication wrote.

EMT students pose for photo
Students in the UC Davis Fire Department’s EMT certification class. (Courtesy)

The course, which began in 2014 and is separate from the department’s student EMT or student firefighter programs, is open to UC Davis students and members of the general public. It comprises online coursework and in-person training that includes clinical rotations with the UC Davis Health Department of Emergency Medicine and time on Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District ambulances.

Graduates of the course need only to pass a test from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians after completion to be certified to work as an EMT, but many of the participants are UC Davis students planning to go on to medical school or pursue another type of health care career after graduation, Trauernicht said.

“This is a flagship example of not only getting hands-on work experience but academic curriculum to prepare them for a job,” he said.

The department, which also offers CPR, first aid and other trainings, recently received conditional approval to begin a paramedic training program. The first paramedic training course began at the end of March.

Photo at top of page: First-responders from several local agencies came to campus for a training exercise in 2017. (Gregory Urquiaga/UC Davis)

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Cody Kitaura is a News and Media Relations Specialist in the Office of Strategic Communications, and can be reached by email or at 530-752-1932.

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