PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — A program at Northern Maine Community College has received a prestigious ranking from the state that designates the Presque Isle education facility as an advanced training center for Maine emergency medical services personnel.
Officials at NMCC announced late last week that the Maine Emergency Medical Services Division of the State Department of Public Safety authorized the college as a Maine EMS Advanced Life Support Training Center.
The designation came after an intense yearlong self-study and a review by outside experts.
The designation positions NMCC as the go-to organization approved by the state to conduct initial licensing courses and refresher courses at all Maine EMS license levels. The college also is authorized to approve continuing education programs in accordance with the Maine EMS Continuing Education Standards.
Daryl Boucher, the school’s EMS program coordinator, said the college is “one of just a handful of programs in the state approved at this level.”
“They looked at everything from the success of our graduates on the job, pass rate on licensure exams to the credentialing of our faculty,” he said. “This approval will allow NMCC to continue to provide both continuing education and licensure programs for years to come.”
Boucher credited the college’s success in getting the authorization to “the hardworking and dedicated faculty on our staff.”
The designation by Maine EMS authorizes NMCC to coordinate and conduct the required State of Maine Practical Skills Evaluations at the First Responder, EMT-Basic and EMT Intermediate levels and the National Registry of EMT practical examination.
Authorization of a program by Maine EMS is assigned when the program meets the criteria outlined for a training center. NMCC will submit annual written reports of educational activities and progress to Maine EMS.
The authorization is for five years.
The goal of the Emergency Medical Services program at NMCC is to produce competent, entry-level paramedics to serve in career and volunteer positions in Aroostook County, neighboring New Brunswick, statewide and nationwide, according to NMCC.
NMCC students now complete their clinical work at a number of area ambulance services with the majority of clinical skills completed at Caribou Fire and Ambulance and Crown Ambulance, the two busiest services in Aroostook County.
Other field affiliation services include the Madawaska Ambulance Department, Fort Kent-based Ambulance Services Inc., Van Buren Ambulance Department, Houlton Ambulance, Island Falls Ambulance and Ashland Ambulance.
The Maine EMS Training Center approval process was created to ensure quality and consistent minimum standards in the delivery of education programs in Maine.