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Seventeen Graduate from Surry’s Paramedic Course


Seventeen students recently graduated from Surry Community College's Paramedic Program, which follows the National EMS Educational Standards and is approved by the North Carolina Office of Emergency Medical Services.

The Paramedic Graduation was held May 10 on the SCC campus in Dobson. Graduates are: Luis De la Rosa and Brittany Myers of Dobson; Haley Gates, Dylan Moats, Jessica Tucker, and Howard Williams of Mount Airy; Brandi Gordi of Boonville; William Jarvis and Laurn Peebles of Yadkinville; Shellie Killgo of Pinnacle; Joana Leon of Mocksville; Jason Lockwood, Katherine Perkins, and Chris Sanders of Winston-Salem; Mason Sewell of Pilot Mountain; and Adrian Wood of Jonesville.

Students enrolled in the Paramedic Program put in more than 1,200 hours of class time including 700 hours of clinical study in order to prepare to serve their communities in emergency situations. Graduates have thechoice to take either the N.C. State Exam or National Registry, and most graduates decided to take both tests.

A special and inaugural award was presented during the graduation. The Kirk R. Killon, EMS Star of Life Award was created by SCC staff to recognize a student who showed extraordinary dedication to knowledge and exemplary professionalism in the field of Emergency Medical Services in honor of Kirk Killon, former director of the SCC Emergency Medical Services Program. The award was presented to Chris Sander.

Billy Haynes, Program Manager Aircare and Brenner's Critical Care Transport, Wake Forest Baptist Health was the guest speaker. Special guests included: SCC Vice President of Corporate and Continuing Education Dr. George Sappenfield, SCC Emergency Medical Programs Director Vickie Mounce-Ramey, and SCC Emergency Medical Programs Coordinator Kenneth Vaught. Graduates and those in attendance were treated to a special video presentation compiled of photos and videos of the students throughout their journey to becoming paramedics.

Class representative Chris Sanders spoke on behalf of the Class of 2019 to express gratitude for all the help they had received in accomplishing their goals and succeed in the program along with thanking their instructors for their time and experience. The students also addressed the challenges they overcame in order to get to graduation and expressed tremendous excitement for the future as the class begins working as paramedics.

Superlative awards were given out during the ceremony. The “Encouragement Award ” was a tie between Shellie Killgo and Chris Sanders. Other awards are as follows: “Most Ideal Partner, ” Shellie Killgo; “Valedictorian ” and “Most Dedicated Student, ” Katherine Perkins and “Most Improved, ” Joana Leon. The “Encouragement Award, ” “Most Ideal Partner ” and “Most Dedicated Student ” awards were voted on by class members to recognize the students who gave the most encouragement throughout the class and who would be their ideal partners working on a medic unit in EMS. The “Valedictorian ” and “Most Improved ” awards were determined by highest grade and most improved grade over the entire course.

Awards for physical endurance training were presented by instructors, Ryan Bennett and Julie Zebron. Endurance Training “Most Improved ” went to Brandi Gordy and “Best All Around ” went to Shellie Killgo. Mandatory endurance training and physical agility were added to the SCC Paramedic program in 2018. This addition was designed to improve the health of students and longevity of their EMS career.

“Increase in physical demands and stress have taken a toll on EMS professionals across the nation in recent years. Our program is being proactive with this new addition, teaching students lifestyle changes in diet, increased physical activity, and avenues to deal with stress, ” said Vickie Mounce Ramey, EMS Program Director.

The Paramedic students began each class day with some type of organized endurance training. Students were assessed at three times during the program, once in the beginning, mid-way and at the end. Each of the assessments showed physical growth, for each individual student.

Surry Community College offers a Paramedic Initial course each year beginning in March. The course is designed to develop knowledge and skills for the advanced emergency care of ill or injured persons, and is approved by the North Carolina Office of Emergency Medical Services. The principle methods of instruction include lecture, demonstrations, skills evaluations, and both hospital and field internships. Specific training areas include administration of IV fluids, advanced airway management, the administration of pre-hospital advanced life support medications, and cardiac monitoring.

Students must have successfully completed the EMT course prior to enrolling in the Paramedic course. The course encompasses approximately 596 didactic hours, 250 clinical hours and 350 hours of field internship experience. For questions about any of Surry's Emergency Medical courses, contact Vickie Ramey, Director of EMS Programs, at (336) 386-3330 or or learn more by following the EMS Programs on Facebook @surryems.

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