Saint Paul EMS Academy

by Anne OConnor | Aug 31, 2010
| 1 Comment
Competition Winner

This entry has been selected as a winner in the
SpectrumTrust Multicultural Endowment competition.

Summary:

The Saint Paul EMS Academy is an innovative, nationally recognized program created to attract low-income, diverse youth to the Emergency Medical Services field. The Academy was initiated in 2009 as a pilot project among the Saint Paul Fire Department, Saint Paul Parks and Recreation, Saint Paul Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity, Inver Hills Community College and other community and business organizations to create a process that would permanently improve the City of Saint Paul’s capacity to diversify our EMTs as well as develop a pipeline of applicants of color and women to join our fire department.

The Saint Paul Fire Department is one of the remaining vestiges of a closely held network of non-diverse employees. Generations of firefighters continued the tradition of helping their family members join the fire department. Thus, it has been particularly difficult for people of color and women to navigate the system and enter the ranks. These are good paying jobs that come with full health and retirement benefits for what many have seen as a limited option for the blue collar segment of our community. As a first step in qualifying for the fire department, candidates must be EMT certified.

About You

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About You

First Name

Anne

Last Name

OConnor

Title

Website

Organization

Country

United States

About Your Organization

Organization Name

Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity

Organization Email

Organization Website

Organization Phone

651-266-8916

Organization Address

280 City Hall; 15 West Kellogg Blvd

Organization City

Saint Paul

Organization Zipcode

55102

Brief description of your organization

CultureBrokers Foundation, Inc. will be the fiscal agent for this grant. The primary contact there is Lisa Tabor, Director, at 651-489-5215 or lisa@culturebrokers.com

Organization Country

United States, MN, Ramsey County

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Your idea

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Name your project

Saint Paul EMS Academy

Country your work focuses on

United States, MN, Ramsey County

Describe your project. Explain the extent to which it mitigates the effects of racism

The Saint Paul EMS Academy is an innovative, nationally recognized program created to attract low-income, diverse youth to the Emergency Medical Services field. The Academy was initiated in 2009 as a pilot project among the Saint Paul Fire Department, Saint Paul Parks and Recreation, Saint Paul Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity, Inver Hills Community College and other community and business organizations to create a process that would permanently improve the City of Saint Paul’s capacity to diversify our EMTs as well as develop a pipeline of applicants of color and women to join our fire department.
The Saint Paul Fire Department is one of the remaining vestiges of a closely held network of non-diverse employees. Generations of firefighters continued the tradition of helping their family members join the fire department. Thus, it has been particularly difficult for people of color and women to navigate the system and enter the ranks. These are good paying jobs that come with full health and retirement benefits for what many have seen as a limited option for the blue collar segment of our community. As a first step in qualifying for the fire department, candidates must be EMT certified.

Project starting date

January 2011

Project ending date

August 2011

Total project budget - required field

$565,825

Innovation

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What makes your project unique?

Prior to the EMS Academy, there was only one person of color per year in the state who graduated as an EMT. To date, Saint Paul EMS Academy has graduated twenty-one disadvantaged young adults, ages 18-24. In the six short months, after the implementation of the first Academy, we have increased the number of EMTs of color twenty-fold and created jobs for 90% of our graduates. At the onset of last year’s Academy, 84% had no income and/or resided in families with $0 income and 16% of the families earned less than $27,000 annually; median wage for a starting EMT profession is roughly $30,982 plus benefits. The success of the 2009 EMS Academies was recognized as a best practice by the U.S. Conference of Mayors and the International Firefighters Association.

We continue to learn from our partners and from each program experience to be more effective. For instance, we have implemented a more thorough educational assessment and we have added a Licensed Social Worker position to assist participants with wrap-around services. We are also exploring a partnership opportunity with the Saint Paul Public Housing Authority to provide safe, free or affordable public housing for graduates of the EMS Academy. In return, they would provide onsite community service and medical emergency response to residents living in public housing. This partnership will promote healthier communities, a decrease in 911 calls, and reduce wait times in emergency rooms. More importantly, the graduates living in public housing provide a mentoring opportunity for younger youth.

Impact

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Tell us about the social impact of your project as it relates to ONE of these three areas: Education, Employment or Housing

We believe that in order for medical personnel to effectively execute exceptional health care, there needs to be a fundamental understanding of the communities, the cultures and the environments in which they work. As we build a more diverse workforce, the Academy seeks to create opportunities for our low-income residents to assist in breaking the cycle of generational poverty. In 2009, the City of Saint Paul experienced a growth in households earning below $24,250 annually. This accounts for 21% of the households in Saint Paul, growing 3% in the past year. Statistically, the median income in the Twin Cities for households of color is well below the median income of Caucasian households. This income disparity is exacerbated by unemployment, which was highlighted in the EPI Issue Brief #278- June, 8 2010, reporting that the unemployment ratio between black and white workers was 3:1 in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area in 2009.

List any specific activities associated with the project and a timeline for the activities

The Summer 2010 EMS Academy with a cohort of 37 participants, began on June 14, 2010.
The Academy covers 205 hours of required courses, to be taken at the Saint Paul EMS Academy- Firehouse #1 at 296 7th Street West. Coursework includes:

CPR certification for 8 hours
National Standard Curriculum EMT for 120 hours
Clinical rotation
Ambulance for 10 hours
Hospital for 10 hours
Physical training and agility awareness for 16 hours
Firefighter awareness education/simulation for 12 hours
Written and practical exam preparation for 20 hours
Actual practical exam time for 6 hours
Written exam for 3 hours

Please summarize the involvement of people of color in the decision-making of your project

This year, we partnered with the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community to sponsor scholarships and wages for an additional five American Indian youth, which we met and exceeded, enrolling seven students in the 2010 Academy. From the conceptual stage, the Saint Paul NAACP has been a part of this project.

Please list which communities of color your project will involve and/or impact

The EMS Academy’s mission is to create a diverse workforce to mirror the demographic changes in the City that occurred between 1990 and 2008. We will impact all the communities of color in Saint Paul, and foreign born residents. In addition, we will conduct targeted outreach in the American Indian community.

What age group will your project impact?

Teens/adolescents (13-19 years), Adults (20-60 years).

Which gender(s) will your project focus on?

Male, Female.

What geographic area(s) will your project affect?

Twin Cities Metro Area (specify below).

If you selected either Twin Cities Metro Area or Other above, please specify or identify the area

Saint Paul/Ramsey County

Sustainability

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What stage is your project in?

Operating for 1‐5 years

If your project is a collaborative effort, please list the other organizations involved

Inver Hills Community College- EMT Course Instruction/Coordination: Kris Hansen
Saint Paul Fire Department- Coordination
Saint Paul Parks- Coordination
Saint Paul Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity- Development/Coordination
Community Action Partnership- Wrap-Around Service Provider

Who or what is expected to change as a result of your project?

Based on the past job placement rate of 90 percent post-graduation and an estimated graduation of 30 individuals, we could employ 27 low-income youth of color by the end of this year.

What information will you provide in the final report to demonstrate the achievement of your results?

Evaluation methods will include the following successes the participants have, including: graduation rates, employment placement, increase of income from pre-Academy income, and number of participants who continue their educational careers

What methods will be used to gather the information?

We will partner with a Masters of Social Work Student conducting his/her research project during the 2010/2011 EMS Academy using qualitative data to evaluate the program. Measurements in this proposed research project would include qualitative data regarding how the EMS Academy had a life changing impact on participants.

What do you hope to learn about racism and its impact?

The Saint Paul Fire Department is one of the remaining vestiges of a closely held network of non-diverse employees. The Academy demonstrates strong political will and eliminates personal barriers, our graduates will be hired, continue working for change from the inside, and inspire others to do the same.

What percentage do people of color comprise your board of directors?

50% on Steering Committee; there is no board for this program

Documentation

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Funding sources: Please check all that apply

In-kind donations, Foundations, Businesses, Local government.

Other

In submitting this application, the applicant agrees to the following (check all boxes)

The applicant will spend the money solely for the purpose stated in the grant award and will return the unexpended portion of the funds, if any. In addition, the applicant will provide an interim and/or final report, as required., The applicant realizes that payment of funds will be at the convenience of the Foundation. The Foundation reserves the right to cancel the grant and/or modify previously agreed-upon payments should such actions be deemed necessary by the Foundation., The applicant understands that the Foundation may review any or all information submitted as part of this request with advisors of the Foundation’s choosing, if deemed necessary by the Foundation., The applicant intends to comply with the terms of the Minnesota Charitable Solicitation Act (MS §309), if applicable..

Martina Yusay said: I know their entries gonna win because of their great proposal. Good luck! - Scott Safadi about this Competition Entry. - 1474 days ago read more >
Saint Paul EMS Academy has been chosen as a winner in SpectrumTrust Multicultural Endowment. - 2513 days ago

Anne OConnor updated this Competition Entry. - 2575 days ago

Anne OConnor submitted this idea. - 2576 days ago