November 11, 2021
Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC/CUNY) hosted a ceremony in Theatre One at 199 Chambers Street to celebrate the graduating class of 2021 paramedic program on November 10. The event, which was also live-streamed, featured speakers including BMCC President Anthony E. Munroe, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Erwin Wong and guest speaker Ryan P. Greenberg, Director, New York State EMS Bureau.
“You are stepping into a profession that is being asked to do more than ever before,” said BMCC President Anthony E. Munroe. “Today, our future is becoming brighter knowing that you as healthcare professionals will be carrying a message of hope and optimism as we continue the fight against Covid-19 and other threatening illnesses.”
Nationwide, employment of Emergency Medical Technicians and paramedics is projected to grow 11 percent from 2020 to 2030, faster than the average for all occupations according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. About 20,700 openings for EMTs and paramedics are projected each year, on average, over the decade.
The six BMCC paramedic program graduates—Prasad Adhvaryu, Ebony Albergottie, Abian Delacruz, Kezwhani Flynn, John Marrero and Judah Noel—will enter that job market fully prepared with the knowledge and skills to function in advanced pre-hospital care.
BMCC Paramedic Program Director Meghan Williams told the event’s attendees that the end goal of a paramedic is to connect to and save lives. The graduates persevered in their pursuit of that mission despite the challenges of hybrid learning in the era of a pandemic.
“The character and integrity that you have displayed in the past 12 months of me knowing you, is an honor and a privilege to say congratulations on becoming paramedics, and to know that if I or anyone that I know, needs emergency medical help, needs care or attention, I would choose any one of you to take care of them,” said Williams.
Graduate John Marrero of the Bronx said he realized he wanted to become a paramedic as a career stepping stone to becoming a firefighter. He said he earned an EMT certificate, entered the paramedic program then took some time off, returned and completed his degree.
“Failure wasn’t an option,” said Marrero. “I have always put myself out there, and I’ve found that helping people in emergency and crisis situations inspires me.”
Graduate Ebony Albergottie started at BMCC after earning her EMT certificate. She took a year off from classes and worked full time on an ambulance to see if becoming a paramedic was the right career choice. After some time working as a paramedic, her goal is to eventually pursue nursing.
“This field is not for everyone,” said Albergottie. “You deal with a lot of different personalities, you have to learn how to communicate, how to be patient and care for a person. Helping people during the pandemic was extreme but very satisfying.”
She said she would recommend BMCC’s program, despite it being especially challenging and rigorous. Albergottie said the support of family and friends helps.
“It takes a year of your life.” Said Albergottie. “You are working every day, you are studying and taking tests, so you really have to love this field. For me it was hard because I have a five-year-old son, so I had to try and split time between school, work and caring for him I made it and now I get to show him what I’ve done.”
Albergottie’s son watched the ceremony’s livestream from home as his mom and the other five graduates received their diplomas and then took the Oath of Geneva, pledging their dedication to the humanitarian goals of medicine.
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- Six graduates celebrate completion of rigorous program
- Paramedic job opportunities expected to grow by 11% nationwide
- BMCC Program director Meghan Williams tells graduates they have displayed character and integrity