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EMT (emergency medical technician) classes can be found individually as well as through the certificate and associate's degree programs of a few West Virginia schools. The 2-year community and technical colleges profiled below offer programs that can lead to certification. Programs may consist of clinical and practicum requirements along with an internship experience. The educational options for aspiring EMTs in West Virginia include a Paramedic Science Degree, an EMT-Intermediate Certificate, an Emergency Medical Services Certificate, an EMT for Health Professionals Skill Set Certificate, and a Pre-Hospital Care (Paramedicine) Certificate. Following are overviews of six West Virginia schools, as well as a table that compares the programs and tuition rates.
Blue Ridge Community and Technical College
Located in Martinsburg, Blue Ridge Community and Technical College offers a certificate program in paramedicine, which requires the completion of 46 credit hours of coursework and is open to those with EMT-B certification. Additionally, an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) program in emergency medical services (EMS) is available to EMTs. This program consists of 60 credit hours, 20 of which are from general education classes.
BridgeValley Community and Technical College
Based in South Charleston and Montgomery, BridgeValley Community and Technical College offers students the chance to become EMTs through the school's Certificate of Applied Science in Emergency Medical Services program. This program requires the completion of 30 credit hours, 14 of which are earned from a core EMT class and a class in human biology. The program also includes skills practice in clinical facilities. The Associate in Applied Science Emergency Medical Services Technology program is a 60-credit-hour degree program, completed over two years. Curriculum is focused on paramedic training and also includes practicum requirements.
Mountwest Community and Technical College
Huntington-based Mountwest Community and Technical College offers students two educational routes towards becoming an EMT. The school's Allied Health Department offers the EMT for Health Professionals Skill Set course, which consists of six credit hours and a corresponding lab. Upon finishing the course, students will receive a Certificate of Successful Completion. Students who want a degree can earn an Associate in Applied Science in Paramedic Science. Coursework in this two-year program includes an EMT class. Those who are already EMTs may begin the degree program in the third semester.
New River Community and Technical College
A Certificate of Applied Science program is offered by New River Community and Technical College in Beckley for aspiring EMT-paramedics. This program requires the completion of a minimum of 39 credit hours in one year, which includes a summer semester. The program's curriculum also includes clinical field and internship opportunities.
Pierpont Community and Technical College
Pierpont Community and Technical College, based out of Fairmont, offers an Associate of Applied Science program in Emergency Medical Services. As part of the program, students can earn an Emergency Medical Services Technician-Paramedic certificate. This is only available to those pursuing the associate's degree program. The certificate program consists of 36 credit hours of core classes; once the certificate has been earned, students are eligible to test at the paramedic level even if they have not yet earned their degree. The A.A.S. program requires 68 credit hours' worth of coursework completed over two years. Both programs include didactic instruction as well as practicum hours.
Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College
Located in Mount Gay, Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College offers students an Associate of Applied Science Paramedic Science program. This 60-credit-hour program trains students in advanced life support skills, including instruction on trauma and shock management, pharmacology, and rescue operations.
In order to be certified as an EMT-Basic (EMT-B) in the state, a student must complete a 120-hour approved training course, pass a written test administered by the National Registry of EMTs (NREMT), and also pass a practical examination proctored by the state. Those who complete EMT-Intermediate training can also take the exam for that level. Individuals desiring to become paramedics must first gain EMT-B certification before completing a program that meets or exceeds the standards established by the U.S. Department of Transportation. They must also pass a written and practical exam with a score of 70% or better.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||EMT Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2015-2016)|
|Blue Ridge Community and Technical College||2-year, public; rural fringe|| Pre-Hospital Care (Paramedicine) Certificate,
Emergency Medical Services Associate of Applied Science
|$3,696 in-state; $6,672 out-of-state*|
|BridgeValley Community and Technical College||2-year, public; mid-sized suburb|| Emergency Medical Services Certificate of Applied Science,
Emergency Medical Services Technology Associate in Applied Science
|$4,300 in-state; $9,620 out-of-state*|
|Mountwest Community and Technical College||2-year, public; mid-sized suburb|| EMT for Health Professionals Skill Set Certificate of Successful Completion,
Associate in Applied Science Paramedic
|$3,816 in-state; $10,776 out-of-state*|
|New River Community and Technical College||2-year, public; small suburb||Paramedic Certificate of Applied Science||$3,706 in-state; $4,834 out-of-state*|
|Pierpont Community and Technical College||2-year, public; distant town|| Emergency Medical Services Certificate in Applied Science,
A.A.S. in Emergency Medical Services
|$4,460 in-state; $10,574 out-of-state*|
|Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College||2-year, public; distant town||A.A.S. Paramedic Science||$3,412 in-state; $5,078 out-of-state*|
Sources: *NCES College Navigator.