Paramedic Career Overview
Southwestern Illinois College’s Paramedic program prepares students for the highest level of pre-hospital care in emergency medicine.
Paramedics receive extensive training in patient assessment and treatment, including:
- Performing advanced airway management techniques
- Establishing I.V.s and administering I.V. fluids
- Performing and interpreting EKGs
- Administering medications
- Performing advanced life support measures
- Working under the direct supervision of an emergency room physician via radio dispatch/phone
The SWIC Career Activities and Employment Center offers a Career Mentor program, including job shadowing.
The U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook provides Paramedic career information.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website provides additional information.
Paramedics are employed by a variety of organizations, including:
- Fire Departments
- Private Ambulance Services
- Police Departments
- Helicopter Flight Crews
- Security Agencies
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, employment is projected to grow 24 percent between 2014 and 2024 as paid emergency medical technician positions replace unpaid volunteers and competition will be greater for jobs in local fire, police and rescue squad departments than in private ambulance services. Opportunities are best for those who have advanced certification.
According to the Journal of Emergency Medical Services Salary & Workplace Survey in 2015, the average salary is $47,000 for a Paramedic. Earnings of Paramedics depend on the employment setting and geographic location as well as the individual’s training and experience.