Every student has their own list of highlights, but some that we hear over and over again when we ask students about their favorite parts of training include:

  • Our "Sick/Not Sick" drill early on in Shoreline where students hone their ability to make quick decisions with limited information.
  • Our Code Drill series, with it's MegaCode final on Bainbridge Island where students lead crews through a prolonged cardiac arrest scenario, including (hopefully) saving the patient, transporting and delivering him/her to the "emergency room", and presenting that patient to a waiting "staff" of physicians and fellow students.
  • Our Pediatrics drill in Redmond where students get invaluble reps taking care of the smallest of patients.
  • Our Trauma Rodeo series, with it's capstone day in Bellevue where students lead fire crews in the care and transport of terrifically moulaged actors in various high-fidelity trauma scenarios.
  • The daily, nearly unlimited access to the Seattle Fire Department and to Harborview Medical Center that provides for countless interactions with patients and professionals alike, laying the foundation of experience for a long and satisfying career in Paramedicine.

It costs approximately $25,000 to train one paramedic student in our program.  In other programs, the student pays their own tuition. However, student tuition for our program is provided via the Medic One Foundation.  Students need only cover their own personal expenses (housing, food, etc.). Some agencies assist with some of these costs. The ability of students to focus solely on the material and their training without the distraction of student debt at the end of the program is a truly unique gift provided by generous donors who give to the Medic One Foundation.  

The 1975 King County Council resolution mandates that all Paramedics practicing in King County go through our training program, so even previously trained paramedics with extensive history practicing elsewhere are required to successfully complete this program to work here.  Students with prior classroom and field experience will have the benefit of that training, but there is still plenty to learn!  Many previously-trained Paramedics tell us this program pushed them to grow in their medicine, leadership, and teamwork.  

Our program is unique. We require every student entering our training program be employed by a paramedic agency, on salary while in the program, and guaranteed a paramedic position upon successful completion of this program. This ensures 100% job placement for all of our students once they have graduated.

Currently the University of Washington does not offer college credits for the Paramedic Training Program. We hope to someday offer a Bachelors degree in Paramedicine. However, with an articulation agreement in place, a student who graduates from our program is eligible for 39 credits towards a Bachelor's degree in Paramedicine with the University of Pittsburgh.

Students must be employed by a Fire Department or EMS agency and nominated for the upcoming class by that agency.

Additional prerequisites for the class are:

  • A current EMT certification.
  • A college level Math and English class.
  • A valid Washington State driver's license.

Students are chosen for the program by their own fire department through a highly competitive selection process. The civilian pathway, equally as rigorous, is through King County EMS. For details on King County EMS's hiring policy and process, please contact them directly.

Each agency is responsible for selecting their own candidates for training, and generally do so based on minimum standards of EMT competence and experience working as an EMT-Basic. Testing processes vary by department, but generally include written, psychomotor, and oral exams (testing EMT-B level skills and knowledge) and may include psychological exam and/or medical screening. Once selected by the agency, the candidate is then interviewed by Paramedic Training prior to final acceptance into the program.

Previous patient contacts are critical to success in the program; we suggest at least 5000 patient contacts as an EMT will make for smoother learning the leadership & medicine of becoming a Paramedic.

Please see "Our Partners" page and contact individual departments for details.

The Paramedic program is a 10-month competency-based program; each of the cognitive, affective, and psychomotor learning domain's building blocks must be mastered before the student is allowed to advance to the next level. Because pre-hospital Paramedicine ultimately deals with life and death decisions, it is imperative that each student be trained to the highest of standards.  In some situations, students may not progress at the same rate as the rest of the class, as some individuals will require additional time or practice to become skilled in particular areas.

This number varies from year to year, based on the needs of the agencies we serve.  Typical class sizes are 16 to 18 with a maximum of 24 students. This means lots of experience and individual attention for each student. 

The answer to this varies by department, but once a student has graduated from our program, they return home newly-minted Paramedics.  Many departments require a period of agency- or county-specific training or re-entry procedures before the new Paramedic can fully begin their new job.  You should expect a period of additional study of drugs, protocols and policies that are specific to your home agency, and which may be different than what you learned in Seattle.  Many students will be assigned a more senior partner to work with initially, and may have a probationary period while the department continues to observe and develop the new Paramedic. 

As a graduate of this program, many paramedics return to the Paramedic Training classroom as guest instructors, mentors and evaluators.  It's a great way to further develop your skills, and to keep in touch with the program that helped form your practice.