The College of Western Idaho Paramedic program is your key to starting a rewarding career in a field that is growing at a faster pace in Idaho than the national average.
Paramedics are the most highly trained prehospital emergency medical personnel. It is their duty to assess the patient’s condition, determine the best course of action and treatment, provide it and transport the patient to the appropriate facility. The CWI Paramedic Program provides the necessary training and experience necessary to provide this life-saving care.
CWI provides high quality education in the Paramedic Program. The CWI paramedic lead instructors have spent well over 40 years each as field paramedics with expertise in technical rescue, flight medicine, 12 lead EKG interpretation, hazardous materials, and tactical medicine. Paramedics deal with patients and families experiencing life-threatening illness and injury. Experienced instructors can make the difference when it comes to this important health care role. Because of the community college setting, the cost of training is significantly lower when compared to the alternative.
The program takes almost 1 year and includes a didactic portion (Jan – Aug), clinical rotations (May – Sept) and field internships (Sept – Dec) in a progressive order. The didactic class days are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 8:00 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. There are strict attendance and academic criteria. Admission into the Paramedic Program requires a selection process prior to registration.
CWI Workforce Development classes are non-credit and not designed for transferability to other institutions. However, Paramedic students who obtain NREMT certification may be eligible to obtain 43 transfer credits through an in state partner institution. Discuss this option with the Program Director.
The CWI Paramedic program is CAAHEP and CoAEMSP accredited.
- Applications will be received year round. (Classes begin once a year – in January).
- Complete applications must be accepted by Oct. 15 for review for the January start date.
- Students with incomplete application packets will receive one reminder email two weeks prior to the application deadline.
- Applicants who pass the initial application review will be notified via email to call Dana Hoyer to schedule an interview/general knowledge test time.
- Applicants will be notified of acceptance status by Oct. 31 by phone call and letter.
- The Paramedic program accepts 15 students. Students that do not make the initial list will be placed on the alternate list in the event there are openings.
- If the Paramedic program does not have at least 15 complete application packets by Aug. 31, applications will continue to be reviewed for possible acceptance until Dec. 1 or the point of 15 accepted applicants, whichever comes first.
- Accepted students must register and pay in full or make approved payment arrangements by Dec. 15.
The curriculum prepares the student to provide basic life support to sick and injured patients in the prehospital setting. They function as an integral part of the Emergency Medical System (EMS). The EMT classes at CWI provide the student with a rounded and well qualified foundation to enter the world of prehospital emergency medicine. Employment opportunities include local and regional ambulance services, fire departments, and third service ambulance agencies.
What You Will Learn to Do
- Respond safely to requests for medical or trauma care
- Operate and maintain an ambulance
- Access and remove patients from vehicular wreckage
- Assess, evaluate and treat patients with traumatic and medical issues based on a thorough knowledge of anatomy and applied physiology, medical terminology, pharmacology and the use of diagnostic devices
- Understand and use 30+ emergency medications
- Interpret and understand the 12 lead EKG
- Use a variety of different intravenous access devices for fluid replacement and medication administration
- Package, immobilize and transport patients to the appropriate facility
- Be a patient advocate
- Transfer care and report to the appropriate hospital staff
- Clean, restock and maintain the equipment and ambulance
- Complete and document a legal patient care report
Requirements and Costs
Degrees and Certificates
Certificate of Completion
Skills, Traits, and Prep Classes
- Invitation to Program based on oral faculty interview and the results of an EMS screening exam (prior to registration)
- High School Diploma or G.E.D.
- Current state or National Registry EMT certification
- Current CPR/BLS for Healthcare Providers Certificate
- Complete vaccination list as provided by staff
- Pass drug test and background check
- 1-5 years of experience as an EMT is highly recommended
- The ability to multitask is essential for a field paramedic
- The ability to remain calm (paramedics are routinely placed under incredible amounts of stress)
- Physical requirements include the ability to lift and move 150 lb manikin. Paramedics lift and move patients of all sizes and shapes (up to 800 lbs).
- Lifting and moving patients is a physical requirement for a field paramedic including those in flight programs.
- A medical math class is highly recommended but not required
Minimum Age Requirement
Navigating your way through college can be confusing, especially if you try to go it alone. CWI One Stop Student Services offers advising assistance, to help in deciding which courses you need to take to complete your educational goals. Visit Advising for more information or contact One Stop Student Services to schedule an appointment.
- Course cost - $12,500
- Field internship - $1,500 (estimate)
- Books - $500 (estimate)
- Fees and tests - $130 (estimate)
Class costs and fees are subject to change without notice.
*Private student loans are available for Paramedic students, ask the Program Director for more information
There are an assortment of scholarship opportunities available if you qualify to help cover some or all of the costs associated with classes offered through CWI Workforce Development. Call us at 208.562.2700 for more information.
CWI Workforce Development offers you multiple payment options to cover the cost of your program. For more information, visit Payment Options
Employment opportunities include private and municipal ambulance services, fire departments, police departments, hospitals and flight programs. In addition, there are opportunities for specialty employment on tactical teams, remote site medicine, travel/expedition medicine and technical and wilderness rescue.
- Fire Fighter
- Emergency Responder
- First Responder
- Search and Rescue
- Emergency Medicine