STARKVILLE — Millsaps Career Technology Center students gathered in Room 12 as flashing red lights illuminated the classroom and the hallway outside. A new $30,000 ambulance simulator was all the rage for Millsaps students.
Three career technology education programs will directly benefit from the ambulance simulator: Common Core Health Sciences, Law and Public Safety, and Sports Medicine. It will begin to be a full educational tool next semester, according to Jemeica Arnold, professor of health science technology.
Funds for the ambulance simulator came from the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006. The law focuses on providing materials for vocational and technical education programs for secondary and post-secondary schools.
Arnold tried for three years to get funding and was approved this year for something that will not only benefit three CTE programs in Millsaps, but the entire district.
“With health sciences, our sophomores can do more practical things,” Arnold said. “With the conversion of the Starkville School District (Oktibbeha Consolidated) from standard daily school to college houses, we felt like things were more tangible. Students can see and get their hands on it, and we can invite EMTs and paramedics from the community, which will be more informative for (students). … (The folks at SOCSD Central Office) encourage us to use the Perkins funds available to our school district for the things our students really need. We are now one of the few schools in Mississippi to have one. We want to invite other schools and even use it for our elementary students to come on a field trip. »
A graduating student from the health sciences program and the sports medicine program is excited about what the new educational tool will bring to students. Colin Kennedy has wanted to enter the medical field since he was in eighth grade, and in a life-threatening battle with COVID, he realized he wanted surgery.
“Last year my lungs collapsed from COVID, and I went to the hospital and was like, ‘Wait, I want to be a surgeon,'” Kennedy said. “In this class, our clinics help us and we can do so many different specialties. One of our units is an emergency medical services unit, and that will be a best practice approach. Everyone can actually see what it’s like to be in a real ambulance.
The ambulance simulator will be fully stocked with oxygen and suction capabilities, IV fluids, an automated external defibrillator, labor stretcher and basic medical supplies. It took two full days to put it together, and it’s now awaiting the finishing touches with stickers to make it look like a real ambulance.
Daejohn Jonson is a sophomore law and public safety student and state vice president of Skills USA, a national career technology organization that hosts competitions. Jonson says this new simulator will help law and public safety students and Skills USA students really understand what it’s like to be in an ambulance.
“From a law enforcement perspective, we are taught that the police work with paramedics and paramedics,” Jonson said. “It’s best to understand what the ambulance looks like and what equipment it contains. Some officers are trained as field medics and I think that will help with that. There are also games in Skills USA competitions that people can now really compete in those games.
The ambulance simulator is housed in Room 12 at Millsaps, but Arnold wants to make it clear that it’s for the whole district and she’s looking forward to what the next school year will bring.