The purpose of this curriculum is to produce competent entry-level Paramedics who can provide the highest level of out-of-hospital care. Upon completion of the program, students will be eligible for National Registry testing and certification. This credential leads to Paramedic licensure or certification in Virginia and most other states.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will be able to:

  • Perform current techniques in pre-hospital emergency care to include signs and symptoms of illness, injuries, medical emergencies, appropriate medical techniques, and ambulance operations.
  • Assess, extricate, and care for victims of trauma incidents utilizing the following management skills; scene size-up, disentanglement, victim stabilization for single and multi-victim situations, hazardous materials incidents, integration of local emergency medical services (EMS) for patient assessment and management, and standard operating procedures.
  • Describe the basic pharmacological background and actions of drugs, regulations, human body systems, pharmacokinetics, and drug calculations.
  • Demonstrate the advanced life support skills approach to emergency care of the emotionally disturbed to include emotional aspects, approach to the patient, psychiatric emergencies and techniques of management.
  • Perform an advanced physical assessment on an emergency patient to include the physical exam, integrative and on-going exams, and communicate/document the findings to the patient and others.
  • Perform a pediatric assessment, manage airway and respiratory emergencies, cardiovascular emergencies, neonatal emergencies, and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Treat children with special healthcare needs.
  • Recognize and intervene in medical emergencies related to toxicology, hazardous materials, infectious disease, and hematology. Include poisoning, drug overdose, and transmission of infectious diseases.
  • Identify pathophysiological principles and assessment findings to formulate a field impression and implement the treatment plan for the patient with cardiovascular disease/injury based on 3-lead and 12-lead cardiac monitoring and interpretation. Define cardiovascular anatomy and physiology, cardiovascular pathologies and management, and adjunctive diagnostics.
  • Utilize assessment findings to formulate a field impression and implement the treatment plan for obstetric, neonatal, pediatric, geriatric, and chronic-care patients.

Program Goal
To prepare competent entry-level Paramedics in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains with or without exit points at the Advanced Emergency Medical Technician and/or Emergency Medical Technician, and/or Emergency Medical Responder levels.

Employment Opportunities
Opportunities for paramedics include employment by fire and rescue service providers, hospitals, school systems, industry, ambulance and transportation services, local, state and federal government agencies, humanitarian relief organizations, and the military.

Program Requirements

An academic advisor will review your preparation in Mathematics and English with you. You’ll be guided to appropriate preliminary coursework to give you the greatest chance of success in this program. Admission to the program will be governed by the requirements for general admission to the College and the Commonwealth of Virginia Office of Emergency Medical Services. Individuals who have a felony conviction may not be eligible to take the certification exam.

Additional Information

The paramedic curriculum is an academically rigorous program, but one having the potential to provide a rewarding career for participants. Applicants for the advanced life support component of the program must meet the following:

  • Be at least 18 years of age by the beginning of the program pursuant to Section 12VAC5-30-270A.1. of the Rules and Regulations of the Board of Health Governing Emergency Medical Services. Be a high school graduate or have satisfactorily completed the GED.
  • Have a current and valid certificate evidencing Emergency Medical Technician certification in Virginia pursuant to Section 12VAC5-30-290 of the Rules and Regulations of the Board of Health Governing Emergency Medical Services. See www.vdh.virginia.gov.
  • Possess and maintain current CPR certification.

Accreditation and State Approval

This program is accredited by the Virginia Office of Emergency Medical Services and is offered in conjunction with Southwest Virginia and Virginia Highland Community Colleges. The program is also nationally accredited by the Committee on Accreditation of Allied Health Educational Programs (CAAHEP), 25400 U. S. Highway 19 North, Suite 158, Clearwater, FL 33763, phone 727-210-2350.

Licensure Meets state educational requirements for licensure Does not meet the state educational requirements for licensure MECC has not made a determination on licensure reciprocity

Sources cited:

Further information regarding EMS certifications may be found at: www.nasemso.org.

Statement for Emergency Medical Services (EMS):

Pursuant to United States Department of Education (US DOE) regulation 34 CFR 668.43 (a) (5) (v), the Mountain Empire Community College Associate Degree in Emergency Medical Services Technology program provides the following information for all prospective and current students:

The National Assoc. of EMS Officials (NASEMSO) has ruled EMS provider licensure and certification to be synonymous and National Registry certification is recognized for reciprocity in 48 of our 50 states.

Mountain Empire Community College is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Academic Requirements

Any student receiving a grade of less than “C” in any of the required program courses will be placed on programmatic academic probation. That course shall be remediated once, with a written contract drafted containing the requirements of the remediation. Remediated courses must be completed with a final grade of “C” or better. Dismissal from the program shall result if the student does not meet the requirements of the contract.

Course and Behavioral Requirements

Selected and supervised student clinical experience is required by the program and will be accomplished at selected, regional health care facilities. The student is responsible for transportation to these facilities, as well as to any scheduled field trips or combined program classes. Program preceptors will observe and evaluate the student’s aptitude for the profession. If the student does not exhibit those documented behaviors required of the EMS professional, the student may be asked to withdraw from the program.

Physical Requirements

An EMS provider is faced with many physical and psychological challenges. Please refer to the Office of Emergency Medical Services web site for a more detailed functional job description. 

Other Requirements:

In addition to basic college costs such as tuition and fees, this program requires expenditures for uniforms, books, liability insurance, CPR certification, immunizations and physical, testing fees, certification courses and some medical equipment items. Students are also responsible for their own transportation to clinical sites. Applicants accepted to the program are required to submit a health certificate signed by a licensed physician or nurse practitioner and should include documentation of measles, seasonal flu, mumps, Hepatitis B, Rubella (MMR) and chicken pox exposure, TB testing, and overall general health of the applicant. A criminal background check and drug screening is also done to confirm compliance with state regulations.  Students who elect to take support courses recommended by the Program Director prior to formal acceptance into the program will find this activity to be advantageous in subsequent course scheduling.

Selection Process:

  • To be eligible for selection to the program, interested persons should complete the following process by May 15:
  • Submit a college admission application.
  • Submit an online application to the program with required attachments.
  • Take the Program Entrance Exam at the June orientation meeting
  • Take the VPT placement test (or submit ASSET, COMPASS, SAT or ACT scores). To enroll in EMS courses the student must test above ENF 1 and MTE 1 or the equivalent as determined by VCCS Multiple Measures guidelines.
  • Send transcripts of previous college courses to MECC.
  • Send high school transcripts to MECC.

After May 15th the first round of students will be selected. Selection will be based on previous college coursework, entrance exam score, and college placement reading scores. Should openings still be available, persons who apply or meet requirements after May 15 will be considered.

For Further Information, Contact: