As EMS Educators go, I consider myself blessed. I have a brilliant learning management system to keep tabs on our providers’ certifications and CEU’s (CentreLearn “rocks my face off,” as the kids say). For classroom courses, I have great AV/IT support, plenty of space, simulation equipment (lovin’ our new ALS Simulator), and an Ops Division that’s happy to let me borrow anything else I need.
|I was perfectly happy with my training equipment until I saw this. Color me envious.|
However, my situation is not the norm for EMS Training Divisions. Budgets have been on the downward spiral for a few years now, and training usually falls on the chopping block early when leaders are facing cuts. Unless the ink is still wet on your certification card, none of this is breaking news to you, I’m sure. My motivation for this entry isn’t its timeliness. Rather, it was sparked by a conversation I recently had with a new provider over dinner. He was describing a training he took at another agency, and how surprised he was by their lack of functioning training equipment. It was the “training is where old equipment goes to die” story that educators know all too well.
|“Small training budget I have… train with a stick, you will!”|
I felt bad for my friend and the other students taking the course. These young Jedi’s were cheated, in my opinion. (incoming sci-fi nerd analogy, brace yourself!) They came ready to learn how to wield lightsabers, and were handed sticks. Sure, it works fine for Yoda to train in a swamp, but don’t fool yourself into thinking that The Force is quite so strong in your training methodology. Fortunately, the quality of our training doesn’t need to degrade along with aging equipment.
Over the next several
days weeks months, I’ll be offering some “Do It Yourself” (DIY) training ideas for EMS education. My hope is that this will spark a two-way exchange with readers about simple projects that have a big educational impact. If something catches your attention, I strongly encourage you to follow CASE Conduct (Copy And Steal Everything). Here’s the caveat: DIY does not mean shabby or tacky. Duct tape has its place, but it shouldn’t be the only tool in your DIY box.
|Some DIY projects clearly suck. Let us resolve not to suck!|