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Phoenix High School, RCC teams up with Mercy Flights in EMS pilot project

PHOENIX, Ore. – The Phoenix-Talent School District is announcing a new pilot program that offers college credits to high school students toward an EMS career.

The project, set to launch this fall, is being developed through a partnership between Phoenix High School, Rogue Community College, and Mercy Flights. The three organizations have been collaborating over the past year to build a curriculum to support a career in the healthcare industry.

Rusty Riis, Rogue Community College EMS Department Chair/Faculty, calls the program a huge benefit to Phoenix High School students.

“Innovative partnerships like this create valuable opportunities for students and strengthen the Emergency Services Industry,” he said. “High school and college programs allow students to explore careers and earn free college credits in their classrooms, reducing their overall college costs. Breaking these barriers is a key focus of the partnerships between the college and industry partners.”

The school district says, the program is open to all students who complete prerequisites in emergency care, safety plans and prevention, as well as body work which includes pre-anatomy and physiology. Courses will be co-taught by a Phoenix High School health educator and a Mercy Flights instructor. After completing the program, enrolled students will earn their Basic Life Support certificate, as well as being certified in CPR and First Aid. Additionally all classroom hours will count toward college credits.

“A traditional four-year college education is not always possible for students due to a variety of reasons,” Phoenix-Talent School District Superintendent Brent Barry said. “Providing an opportunity in high school for students to gain college credits will positively position their next steps once they graduate high school. Our vision for this collaboration is to ultimately see more students enter the healthcare workforce.”

Phoenix High School students are also invited to participate in the Mercy Flights Explorer program. According to Mercy Flights, this interactive, worksite-based career education program allows students to focus on one career field like fire, EMS, or law enforcement. Students enrolled in the explorer program gain invaluable and relevant training through community service projects and outreach.

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