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Does School / Institution Matter?

Discussion in 'Education and Training' started by MMiz, Jan 8, 2017.

  1. MMiz

    MMiz I put the M in EMTLife Community Leader

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    I earned my EMT-Basic at community college and have my BA and MA degrees from public universities. I don't think the prestige of my college has ever helped me get a job in EMS or teaching.

    Those of you working in the field, do you judge or notice trends when students attend certain institutions?

    Does HR really care where you went to school?
     
  2. EpiEMS

    EpiEMS Forum Deputy Chief

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    Never heard of anybody caring where people do their EMT (or paramedic) training. And generally, it seems, typical EMS hiring doesn't care about a post-secondary degree, as far as I can tell.

    However, having worked in other industries, I can say that degree prestige is often a factor in hiring decisions (outside of EMS)/
     
  3. NysEms2117

    NysEms2117 Parole officer/EMT

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    I agree with epi. In other professions degree prestige does matter, I also think it is relatively location based. For example my B.S is in criminology/criminal justice, the school I went to in nys is very good, but if I applied to California for a job, they would have no idea what the school I attended was. My emt certificate was from a "fire safety academy" I thought they did a good job, and I got a job no problem working part time. I don't think in EMS it makes a huge deal, however I speak from an east coast perspective on it, and Cali seems absolutely crazy to me.
     
  4. VentMonkey

    VentMonkey Forum Deputy Chief Premium Member

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    You have a bachelors, plus a masters puts you light years ahead of many many EMT's and paramedics at most any service I am aware of, especially the career-EMS folks.
     
  5. StCEMT

    StCEMT Forum Deputy Chief

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    Around here, to a degree. A lot of outside people know the program I attended is highly regarded as one of, if not the best in the area and have said so. My partner said in hindsight he should probably have done a different one than he did and that there was a lot he had to go back over himself. Good medic, but had to put in some extra work.
     
  6. EpiEMS

    EpiEMS Forum Deputy Chief

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    Location definitely matters! There are "regional" differences/preferences and also so-called "regional" schools - schools with a good reputation in some short radius, but not much beyond that.

    Hopefully, as you said, the degree programs will help advance the field by pushing away less rigorous programs. That being said, there isn't any move from the business end to improve compensation for degrees, as far as I can tell, at the bulk of agencies.
     
  7. EpiEMS

    EpiEMS Forum Deputy Chief

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    Another useful point - there is some evidence that for more subjective disciplines, institutional selectivity matters more than for technical ones.
     
    VentMonkey likes this.
  8. FireWA1

    FireWA1 Has no idea what I'm doing.

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    As some probably have said, regionally the school matters. Once you go outside of the state or region the reputation is not really known and is not regarded as a plus or minus. I think the online schools where anyone in the country can go so they are known more might develop a national reputation but outside of Washington people don't know about tcc.
     
    STXmedic and DEmedic like this.
  9. Tigger

    Tigger Dodges Pucks Community Leader

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    My undergrad has a very strong reputation in the Rockies, and it certainly made the chief happy during my interview. I still think I could have gotten hired without it, but my degree and its reputation has allowed me to take on projects that most 20something paramedics do not get to.
     
  10. EpiEMS

    EpiEMS Forum Deputy Chief

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    Have you found that it improves (or did improve) your compensation?
     
  11. Chase

    Chase Flight Nurse

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    I think that it may make a difference regionally but outside of that probably not. Around the area most know which schools tend to have better students and graduates than others. Also, if the school is affiliated with a hospital or system then they tend to hire from within. I have never applied for a job outside of my local area but I wouldn't expect someone to hire me based on my nursing school even though it does have a pretty recognizable name/affiliation.
     
  12. Tigger

    Tigger Dodges Pucks Community Leader

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    Hah, that would be nice.

    Though I am presently sitting at a coffee shop getting paid OT to write grants so I guess I have that going for me. But it doesn't help my hourly rate.
     
  13. DrParasite

    DrParasite The fire extinguisher is not just for show

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    I've found that as long as you have your EMT cert, or your paramedic cert, most places couldn't care less about where you have it. I will even say that if you have a degree or two (either Bachelors or Masters), it has 0 impact on obtaining an entry level position in EMS, especially if that degree is in an unrelated field.

    I honestly think that the quality of the program shouldn't matter, provided you have the knowledge to pass the regulatory exams. Think of it this way: if you passed the exams, and your program sucked, then you needed to work extra hard to learn the material needed. If you passed the exams and your program was awesome, than they adequately prepared you. The end result is the same: you knew what was needed to pass the exams, so how you got about amassing that knowledge is pretty irrelevant.
     
  14. EpiEMS

    EpiEMS Forum Deputy Chief

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    Reputation is definitely an interesting consideration.

    Another point related to this is how much experience is necessary before people stop caring where you went to school and start caring about where you worked/how much you've worked.

    I would tend to expect that this is true throughout the country, more or less - anybody aware of systems where this is not the case?

    This is completely true as far as baseline competence is concerned - and especially where a patch and a pulse is the requirement. However, when qualitative differences in practitioners start to matter, I would argue that the discrepancies between programs' quality/reputation start to factor in, we will one day see differences (like we do in other fields).
     
  15. DrParasite

    DrParasite The fire extinguisher is not just for show

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    Very true, and not only in EMS.

    People only care about where you got your initial training when you are considered an entry level applicant. once you are no longer considered "entry level", and are considered an "experienced" applicant, they care about where you worked, and what you have done.
     
    DEmedic likes this.
  16. Alan L Serve

    Alan L Serve Forum Lieutenant

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    Only matters if your school/institution isn't accredited and you therefore can't take the NREMT or get a state certification/license. Other than that it only matters if you have your NREMT or state certification/license.
     

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