Ambulance donation brings real world to Paramedicine

February 2, 2017

Posted: Thu, 02/02/2017 - 8:42am in News

An ambulance donation by St. Cloud Gold Cross to the SCTCC Paramedicine program is one way students are getting real-world experience for their careers.

When the program expressed a need for an ambulance to better teach students, Gold Cross responded. Now Paramedicine students will get a taste for what to expect when starting their careers. More than half the graduates from the program are hired by Gold Cross, so the partnership helps both the ambulance service and SCTCC Paramedicine.

“We’re very glad to donate to SCTCC,” said Elie Deeb, Operations Supervisor at Gold Cross. “Many of our employees are from here. We want to make sure we have a good relationship and good communication with the program.”

Students simulate their Paramedicine skills during their time at SCTCC, but a lot of it is done in a stationary setting. With the ambulance donation, students can now practice their skills in a more realistic environment.

Sarah LaVoi, who’s in her second year as a Paramedicine student, is happy for this opportunity: “Being able to practice in a real-life, simulated environment helps us better our skills.”

“The back of the ambulance is a lot different from sitting stationary,” said Jeralee Lynch, also a second year student. “Going 30 miles per hour down the road and turning while putting an IV in, or any set of skills, makes it a little more difficult. It brings the real world into our learning.”

In addition to practicing in the back of the ambulance, students get practice driving an ambulance, including backing up into tight spaces. This is especially helpful for students coming into the program with no experience driving a large vehicle.

For Kerry Degen, Paramedicine instructor and program director, this is a great opportunity to showcase the partnership between SCTCC and Gold Cross.

“This ambulance donation is one of the many ways that Gold Cross has partnered with us as a program,” said Degen. “Gold Cross is very present in the community, so having that support is really important for our students to fulfill their education and advance into their careers.”

The SCTCC Paramedicine program accepts applications between Dec. 1 and April 1 for entry into the program the following year, depending on available spots. For more information on the program and to apply, visit

Kate Wallace