In the lobby of the National Medical Education & Training Center in West Bridgewater, Mass., hangs a large map of the world peppered with red dot stickers. (See photo) The stickers represent the places our paramedic students come from— Qatar, Australia, Switzerland, the Philippines, Iraq, Afghanistan, Germany, Ireland, St. Croix, the Cayman Islands, the Turks and Caicos Islands and points throughout North America.
Each dot tells a story about why the student couldn’t attend a local paramedic program and what drove them to enroll in nontraditional education. Their personal journeys are long with many obstacles, including the constant need to overcome the negative connotation that surrounds attending a hybrid paramedic program.
For more than 30 years, brick and mortar classrooms have been the only way EMS education was delivered in many parts of the world, so why change the model?