Career Studies Certificates
Career Studies Certificate in EMT- Intermediate to Paramedic Bridge
Three semesters

The purpose of this curriculum is to produce competent entry-level Paramedics who can service the community with advanced life support care via the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) infrastructure. Upon completion of the program, students will be eligible for National Registry testing and certification in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Employment opportunities for Paramedics are available with ambulance; fire and rescue services; hospitals; local, state and federal government agencies; and humanitarian relief organizations.

Program Goals:

At the completion of the program the graduate will be able to demonstrate:

  • The ability to comprehend, apply, and evaluate the clinical information relative to his role as an entry- level paramedic;
  • Technical proficiency in all skills necessary to fulfill the role of an entry-level paramedic; and
  • Personal behaviors consistent with professional and employer expectations for the entry-level paramedic. 

Admission Requirements:

Prior to the starting program courses, the applicant must:


  1. Meet eligibility requirements as stipulated by the Virginia Office of EMS; and
  2. Be certified as an EMT-Intermediate and have three years’ experience at or above that level; and
  3. Meet the college’s general admission requirements.



This program is accredited nationally by the Committee on Accreditation of Allied Health Educational Programs (CAAHEP).

Selection Process:

To be eligible for selection to the program, interested persons should complete the following process by May 10:

  1. Submit a college admission application.
  2. Submit an application to the program (separate document) with required attachments.
  3. Take the VPT English test or submit satisfactory SAT or ACT scores.
  4. Have transcripts of previous college courses sent to the college.

At this time the first round of students will be selected. Selection will be based on previous college coursework, interview, entrance exam, and college placement reading scores. Students should place into ENF 3 or higher to be eligible for consideration in first round of selection. Should openings still be available, persons who apply or meet requirements after May 10, or score lower than cut score on the reading exam will be considered.

Physical Requirements:

An EMS provider is faced with many physical and psychological challenges. Please refer to the Office of Emergency Medical Services web site for a more detailed functional job description. See Virginia Office of Emergency Medical Services Training Programs Summary , Pages 14-16.

Academic Requirements:

Students must make a “C” or better in all program core courses. Any student receiving a grade less than “C” will be placed on programmatic academic probation. That course shall be remediated. Remediated courses must be completed with a final grade of “C” or better.

Clinical and Behavioral Requirements:

Selected and supervised student experience is required by the program and will be accomplished at selected, regional health care facilities. The student is responsible for transportation to these facilities, as well as to any scheduled field trips. Program preceptors will observe and evaluate the student’s suitability for the profession. If the student does not exhibit those documented behaviors required of the EMS professional, the student might be asked to withdraw from the program.

Other Requirements:

Applicants accepted to the program are required to submit a health certificate signed by a licensed physician, physician’s assistant or RNP and should include documentation of measles, mumps, Rubella (MMR) and chicken pox exposure or inoculations; documentation of Hepatitis B inoculation; Tuberculosis testing; and overall general health of the applicant. A criminal background check and drug screening is also done to confirm compliance with state regulations. See Virginia Office of Emergency Medical Services Training Programs Summary , Pages 7-8.

The purchase of items such as uniforms, liability insurance and other accessories is the financial responsibility of the individual student. Students who elect to take support courses recommended by the Program Director prior to formal acceptance into the program will find this activity to be advantageous in subsequent course scheduling. 

Program Contact:

Bill Akers Jr., MS, NRP, Program Director, Bill.Akers@sw.edu276-964-7729

First Year
First Semester (Summer)
Course Number Course Title Lect. Hrs. Lab Hrs. Course Cr.
EMS 213

Students should take BIO 141, 142 or  BIO-145. It is recommended that students who are planning to transfer to Registered Nursing, Radiography, or Respiratory Therapy complete BIO-141-142.
Due to the short duration of these programs and the absence of general education requirements from most, successful completion does not entitle one to participate in or to be recognized during graduation exercises.

ALS Skills Development 0 4 2
BIO 145 Human Anatomy and Physiology for the Health Sciences 3 4 3
Suggested Credits & Hours for Semester 3 8 5
Second Semester (Fall)
Course Number Course Title Lect. Hrs. Lab Hrs. Course Cr.
EMS 205 Advanced Pathophysiology 4 0 4
EMS 209 Advanced Pharmacology 3 2 4
EMS 242 ALS Clinical Internship III 0 3 1
EMS 243 ALS Field Internship III 0 3 1
Suggested Credits & Hours for Semester 7 8 10
Third Semester (Spring)
Course Number Course Title Lect. Hrs. Lab Hrs. Course Cr.
EMS 201 EMS Professional Development 3 0 3
EMS 207 Advanced Patient Assessment 2 2 3
EMS 211 Operations 1 2 2
EMS 244 ALS Clinical Internship IV 0 3 1
EMS 245 ALS Field Intership IV 0 3 1
Suggested Credits & Hours for Semester 6 10 10