(ST. JOSEPH, Mo) EMT students at the Hillyard Technical School are Hoping to fill the gaps left by a nationwide shortage in EMTs.
"I have a really big heart for people and I’ve always wanted to help," Bethany Gregson, EMT student said. "I feel like this is the biggest way to be able to help people."
Gregson, her fellow EMT students, and their instructor call the program rewarding.
"I get to see all these young people that are excited and enthused about helping people." Becky Mercer, Instructor said.
Mercer said the occupation isn’t easy.
"It’s a hard job," Mercer said. "It takes a special person with a special mindset."
Finding people who are interested in becoming EMTs has become just as difficult.
"There is a shortage in our area and all over the state of Missouri," Mercer said.
"The class can be strenuous," Tyler Mann, EMT Student said. "You’re having to do practical skills as well as knowing medical knowledge in order to save someone’s life."
Buchanan County EMS said the shortage hasn’t had an effect on them, but they say it's important to share these skills for the next generation of EMTs, and hopefully fill an important gap.
"We’ve gotta look to the future and look to that growth and that’s why we wanna get these kids excited now and get them looking to that future." Andrew King, Buchanan County EMS said.
Staff at Buchanan County EMS said they the field is expected to grow over 14% over the next 7 years.