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EMS Faculty and Students Recognized

Peninsulas EMS Council, Inc., (PEMS) held its annual Regional EMS awards in May at Busch Gardens as part of EMS Day. The awards recognize outstanding achievements and notable work of individuals, agencies, and organizations that provide emergency medical services in the Peninsula, Middle Peninsula, and Northern Neck. Rappahannock Community College (RCC) is proud to announce that several faculty and students won awards.

Phil Shahan, adjunct EMS faculty, won the Outstanding Prehospital Educator Award. According to PEMS the award criteria includes “a provider who exemplifies outstanding teaching and leadership qualities while participating as an educator in an EMS program.” “I am humbled and excited to have been selected,” said Shahan.

“Even as a part-time (adjunct) faculty member, Phil began the stand-alone Advanced EMT course at the college. This program is growing each semester and I have no doubt it will continue to grow with the efforts and passion Phil provides to the program. He currently has a 100% pass rate on the National Registry, consistently gets excellent reviews from his students, and has an overall passion of sharing his knowledge of his profession,” said Dr. Shannon Kennedy, RCC president.

More high praise for Shahan came from Interim Dean of Health Sciences, Ellen Koehler. “Phil actively brings in outside subject matter experts to provide excellent teachable moments with his students, is an active member of the RCC EMS Program Citizens Advisory Committee, and has immensely contributed to the EMS program reputation and growth experienced in the past year,” said Koehler. “Phil works tirelessly to recruit students for this program and the college.”

RCC EMS Adjunct Instructor Lewis Kerns won the award for Outstanding EMS Leadership. This award goes to an individual who has demonstrated the ability to organize, conduct, manage, problem solve, and evaluate within an organization. Kerns is the EMS Chief for Gloucester County Volunteer Fire and Rescue (GCVFR). “In spite of an ever-increasing call volume in a growing community, GCVFR maintains an amazing response time and capabilities under his leadership,” said the award presenter.

Joshua Craig, a student at RCC, received the award for Outstanding Contribution to EMS by a High School Senior or GED Recipient. Accompanying the award is a $1,000 scholarship and an opportunity to win a $5,000 scholarship at the state level. In addition to being in high school, Craig takes dual enrollment classes at RCC, is an Eagle Scout, volunteers, and even teaches Stop the Bleed, CPR/AED, Basic First Aid, and Wilderness First Aid to others. “Teaching people these skills has a positive impact on prehospital care by allowing care to begin before EMS arrives on the scene, and improving patient outcomes,” said Craig.

The regional award winners will compete in their respective categories for the Governor’s Awards in November.

“We are proud of our EMS faculty and students at RCC,” said Kennedy. “These recognitions honor the commitment and passion they have for the profession.”