These newly-trained grads are ready to come to the rescue.
Kingsborough Community College celebrated the first group of graduates from its new Paramedic Program on Aug. 28, as the students, joined by friends and family, received messages of encouragement from faculty and school administrators.
One diploma recipient said that the program, which the school introduced in 2013, was easily the strongest of several similar programs that he had checked out at other schools.
“I have sampled other programs and this was by far the best one,” said graduate Dmitry Boykov of Sheepshead Bay. “The amount of effort put in by the college and the staff, they work tirelessly to ensure the program is a success.”
The professor tasked with running the program said the initial graduating class was a reflection of the hard work done by instructors and support staff.
“Our graduates represent the capstone project of many years of hard work by a dedicated team of faculty and staff within the Paramedic Program,” said Professor George Contreras, the program’s head. “Our program is the only one that emphasizes the collaboration between nurses and paramedics at a very early stage in their education.”
Contreras also noted the life-saving achievement of two graduates, Yehezkel Ben Yaakov and Aleksey Kaplunovskiy, who recently resuscitated a 92-year old woman in cardiac arrest by using the skills they had learned in the program.
Kingsborough’s Paramedic Program is the first college-based program of its kind in Brooklyn, and all of the faculty are paramedics themselves. Boykov, a 31-year-old former Marine who spent his time in the service as a firefighter and emergency medical technician, said that when he decided to pursue a career in emergency medical services, he knew he had to become a paramedic, a position that carried more responsibility.
“My background has been in rescue, so I’ve always wanted to upgrade my skills and become a paramedic,” Boykov said. “You’re limited as an EMT. Being a paramedic is the next dimension in emergency medicine.”
Boykov said his experience in the military prepared him for the difficult nature of his chosen career path.
“I’ve traveled the world and country, and seen people at their worst moments and in horrible circumstances,” said Boykov. “I think the most important thing you have to have is empathy.”