1889 Foundation is providing six full scholarships to paramedic students annually to help ease the area’s shortage of emergency services personnel. The first class of students supported by the scholarships has just graduated (pictured above L to R: Brandon McMinn, Alex McNemar, Lauren Dvorchak, David St Clair, Reanna Killinger, Kyle Glessner) and a new class is set to begin the program this month.

Paramedics are skilled, registered healthcare professionals trained to provide advanced emergency medical care outside the hospital setting. To enter the paramedic program at the School of Emergency Medical Services at Conemaugh Health System, students must first be certified as emergency medical technicians (EMTs). The year-long, accredited paramedic program consists of 1,350 hours of classroom and lab instruction, clinical experience, and a field internship.

“Medical education and training is one of our areas of focus, and we are excited to support the next generation of paramedics in this region,” explains Susan Mann, president of 1889 Foundation.

“I was starting the program not sure how I was going to handle the finances,” says Reanna Killinger, who just graduated from the program. “I’m a single mom with two kids, and I was working two jobs. I knew I’d figure it out somehow, but 1889 Foundation’s generosity figured it out for me.”

“We have quite a shortage of emergency services folks,” says Michael Rodgers, program director for the School of Emergency Medical Services at Conemaugh Health System. “1889 Foundation’s support is helping increase the number of paramedics on the street.”