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BCC to conduct emergency drills
Changes in EMT, auto and corrections programs announced
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Anyone who drives past Barton Community College this Saturday may see several police cars and a couple of ambulances on campus. But they shouldn’t reach for a cell phone to call 911, college officials said, because it’s all part of a planned learning event.

The annual Barton Field Operations Day will start at 9 a.m., said Karyl White, director of the college’s Emergency Medical Services program.

The college vice president will be wielding a firearm before the day is over, but that’s just one scenario that will involve students in several classes, including Emergency Medical Technician, nursing, psychology and crime scene investigation.

White said Field Operations Day has some similarities to a recent mock disaster staged in Great Bend, for training of city and county employees, as well as area first responders and hospitals. But Field Operations Day is primarily a student event.

White shared this information Thursday during Barton’s board of trustees study session. She also described some coming changes in the EMS and Mobile Intensive Care Technician programs at the college.

The Associate in Applied Science MICT degree will become a Paramedic degree by the end of the year. "The reason behind the name change is to align Kansas with the nationally recognized name," according to information provided to the trustees. "The change is in name only; as we adopted the national scope of practice and curriculum more than 10 years ago."

Other programs will see name changes and some curriculum changes. The Board of EMS adopted the national standard curriculum for First Responder, EMT-B, and EMT-I. First Responder (FR) has become Emergency Medical Responder (EMR); Emergency Medical Technician–Basic (EMT) has now reverted back to Emergency Medical Technician (EMT); and Emergency Medical Technician–Intermediate (EMT-I) is now Advanced Emergency Medical Technician.

Curriculum changes will be most extensive in the EMT-I program, which White said will undergo "a major overhaul."

That isn’t the only vocational program at Barton that will see some changes. Darcy Wedel, head of the automotive technology program, said there will be some changes in course requirements for degree and certificate programs, as requested by the Kansas Board of Regents.

KBOR seeks to align similar programs throughout the state with comparable course work.

Dean Elaine Simmons gave an update on plans for a certificate in the field of corrections. That program is for people who want to work at places such the Ellsworth Correctional Department or the Larned Correctional Mental Health Facility.

"We’re the only institution in the state that has an approved corrections degree," Simmons told the trustees. Now, along with its Associate’s Degree, the college hopes to offer an abbreviated course of study that leads to a certificate in corrections. Six courses have been extracted from the Associate Degree program to create the certificate program.

"We’re working closely with the Kansas Department of Corrections on this," Simmons said, which is one reason Barton won’t have to change anything to come into KBOR alignment on this one. However, Simmons said the process has taken longer than expected because the Technical Education Authority and KBOR had to be convinced that corrections should be separate from criminal justice.