OSU-OKC and EMSA launch education partnership
Oklahoma State University-OKC and EMSA (Emergency Medical Services Authority) are launching an education partnership this semester to provide full-time paramedic education to a group of EMSA Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs).
“There is a critical shortage of paramedics across the nation, and Oklahoma is no exception,” said OSU-OKC Paramedicine Department Head Dr. Justin Hunter. “This new cohort interjects highly educated and professional paramedics into the community faster than is normally possible to care for emergent out-of-hospital needs of our residents.”
Frank Gresh, Interim Chief Operating Officer for EMSA, said he is optimistic about this innovative industry and higher education partnership.
“There is an extreme need for paramedics across the EMS industry right now, and this intensive program will help EMSA promote 25 of our own EMTs to provide a higher level of care in a position of greater responsibility in Oklahoma City,” he said.
Dr. Hunter said OSU-OKC is committed to new ways to address the healthcare workforce crisis, saying the sheer square mileage of the EMSA regulated service area makes it one of the largest and busiest EMS providers in the country. EMSA, the largest EMS agency in Oklahoma, employs more than 300 pre-hospital care providers who serve more than one million residents in central and northeastern Oklahoma.
The dedicated EMSA cohort will not only receive the education necessary for licensure, but will also graduate with an Associate’s degree in Paramedicine from Oklahoma State University-OKC, differentiating this initiative from EMSA’s past paramedic school partnerships.
In addition, this cohort will finish the program in nearly half the time as a traditional full-time student in the same program due to spending the equivalent of three full-time working days on campus every week in classes and simulation labs.
Students in the traditional paramedicine program at OSU-OKC enjoy a 100 percent job placement rate. Starting salaries for paramedics in the Oklahoma City area can range anywhere from $45,000 - $65,000. For more information on admission, call (405) 947-4421.