Michigan Works! to help support paramedic tuition for up to 18 qualifying applicants
(Aug. 30, 2017- REED CITY, Mich.) – Launching a career as a paramedic just became easier and more affordable for residents of six northern Michigan counties, thanks to a growing training/educator partnership between local EMS agencies, including Life EMS Ambulance and its Education Centre along with Michigan Works!, the state’s premier workforce development agency.
Effective immediately, residents of Lake, Mason, Mecosta, Newaygo, Oceana and Osceola counties can now receive immediate Michigan Works! funding for paramedic career coursework which starts Sept. 21 in Reed City, and extends through Nov., 2018. Local EMS agencies, including Life EMS Ambulance and its Education Centre, are collaborating to provide training at the Osceola County EMD Building, 22054 Professional Dr.
Michigan Works! funding will cover paramedic coursework for up to 18 students. A separate $20,000 grant from the West Michigan Regional Medical Authority will augment the Michigan Works! funding, allowing 100% tuition coverage. A typical 14-month paramedic course, which involves approximately 16 hours of weekly in-class instruction, can cost between $10,000 and $15,000. To qualify, paramedic students must have completed EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) training. Application forms can be found here https://www.lifeems.com/product/paramedic-emt-p/
Jeremy Beebe, Director of Osceola County EMS, has been instrumental in the development of the partnership, including securing the grant through the West Michigan Regional Medical Control Authority.
“We are extremely excited to host the paramedic program,” said Beebe, “I have four (4) EMT’s ready to start the class.”
Added Gil Jacques, Director of Education of Life EMS Ambulance’s Education Centre: “This is a true regional partnership to make the paramedic career path more accessible to northern Michigan county residents.”
According to the Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for EMTs and paramedics between 2014 and 2024, is expected to rise 24% https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/emts-and-paramedics.htm.
Offering greater access provides more paramedic career opportunities, explained Jacques. Currently, residents of the northern Michigan counties need to travel more than 60 miles one way to receive paramedic training, making it time prohibitive for most students.
“We’re thrilled to bring more educational opportunities to the communities we serve,” said Tony Sorensen, Vice President of Resource Performance with Life EMS Ambulance. “This partnership with Michigan Works! removes both cost and travel barriers making the paramedic career path much more attractive and realistic to northern Michigan county residents.”
According to Michigan Works! West Central Grants and Contracts Manager Shelly Keene, the agency is committed to helping employers meet their talent needs, as well as to helping job seekers receive the training they need.
“Paramedics face life and death situations on a daily basis and Michigan Works! West Central recognizes Paramedic training as a high growth high demand occupation in our Region” said Keene. “Whether you are an employer or a job seeker in need of assistance, please contact your local Michigan Works! office to see how we can help.”
Since its founding in 1998, Life EMS Ambulance’s Education Centre has instructed nearly 4,000 students who have become EMTs, paramedics and/or advanced level paramedics.