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Blinn College Paramedic Program recognizes 18 graduates with pinning ceremony

State-of-the-art simulation training prepares students to save lives

August 9, 2017

The Blinn College Paramedic Program welcomed 18 new graduates to the profession Saturday, Aug. 5, during a pinning ceremony held on the Blinn-Bryan Campus.

Each graduate completed 45 credit hours to earn their paramedic technology certificate or Emergency Medical Services Associate in Applied Science degree, which qualify them for entry-level paramedic positions and can be applied toward obtaining a bachelor’s degree.

Eric Pierce
Blinn College Paramedic Program graduate Eric Pierce receives his paramedic pin from his wife Bethany as his daughter Chloe watches during the Class of 2017 pinning ceremony Saturday at the Blinn-Bryan Campus.

Courses include basic and clinical emergency medical technician, clinical emergency medical services, trauma management, cardiology, medical emergencies and EMS operations. Students must also complete the Paramedic Academy, a three-semester program that prepares students for certification or licensure by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians and the Texas Department of State Health Services.

“In addition to the hands-on training students receive in our high-fidelity simulation lab, they get to train alongside a team of highly experienced professionals,” said Zack Varner, Program Director. “These graduates are leaving Blinn prepared to save lives.”

Members of this year’s graduating class include: Wiley Adair, Yeonju Choi, Benjamin Earle, Coleman French, Mark Garza, William George, Joshua Glover, Timothy Higginbotham, Thomas Hill, Matthew Howard, Garrison Jenkins, Kyle Joswiak, Jacob King, Michael Oberhelman, Jonathan Ortega, Eric Pierce, Meghan Snell, and Donald Tissell.

Dr. Mark Escott, EMS System Medical Director for the City of Austin and Travis County and Assistant Professor in the Section of Emergency Medicine at the Baylor College of Medicine, served as keynote speaker at the pinning ceremony.

Varner, a Blinn alumnus and nine-year emergency medical services veteran, attributes the students’ success to the program’s seasoned instructors and rigorous, hands-on coursework.

“I could not be more proud of these students,” Varner said. “They have worked incredibly hard over the last three semesters, including countless hours of lab and clinical rotations and a 240-hour summer internship. They are prepared to take their knowledge and skills and use them to serve their communities.”

Blinn’s Paramedic Program is part of the Emergency Medical Services Program, which offers emergency medical technician and paramedic training. For more information, visit:

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