Pre-Paramedic Students Get Unexpected Real-World Glimpse of Career Futures

Published 06.09.2006

Student News

A field trip for students enrolled in an English as a Second Language program got off to an exciting start May 26. The group was traveling on Route 87 toward a hiking trip at World's End State Park when they noticed a man had fallen from a roof. All four of the students hail from Saudi Arabia and are enrolled in preparatory courses before entering the college's pre-paramedic program.

The students are being trained on Penn College's campus through funding from Houston-based Aramco Services Co., a wholly owned affiliate of Saudi Arabian Oil Co., and, after earning degrees from Penn College, they will work as paramedics in the emergency room of Saudi Aramco's 500-bed facility in Saudi Arabia.

Just a day before entering their first paramedic course, the students knocked on doors to find a landline to call 911 the faculty and students had three cellphones, none with coverage and watched as a first responder from an area fire police organization arrived, followed by emergency medical technicians, then a paramedic, illustrating the next day's lesson on the various levels of emergency responders. A student also held the patient's neck steady while the medical team helped him.

"The students were very excited," said Jody L. Lantz, ESL specialist and one of two staff members attending the trip. "It was great motivation for them to see what they were getting into and to (eventually) have skills themselves and participate."

ESL specialist Natasha Holt was also part of the group.