Emergency Medical Technician

Where it all starts! Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) is the stepping stone to all Emergency Medical Services careers. Are you interested in medicine, helping people, becoming a firefighter and volunteering in the community? If so, EMT training will provide insight into many different careers. Columbia Basin College offers EMT each year in the spring and fall quarters.

The field of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is built upon a foundation that begins with basic CPR/First Aid and ends with the advanced care provided by a Paramedic. Throughout EMS, you will find various levels of education that all focus toward the "chain of survival". This chain of survival is an ideal of how patients can best be treated, whether suffering a heart attack or being involved in a motor vehicle accident.

CBC Emergency Medical Technician Program
What is an EMT?
  • EMT is the basic certification level that comprises the largest population of EMS responders and is often considered the backbone of EMS.
  • EMT's perform basic life-saving skills which include:
    • control of bleeding
    • stabilizing fractures
    • assisting patients with medications
    • providing oxygen and other necessities to avoid the development/progression of shock
    • transportation to the emergency room
  • EMT's in Washington State are also trained to place intermediate airway devices, administer epinephrine to patients in anaphylactic shock and use semi-automated external defibrillators.
Information Sessions

Please attend one of the EMT, Paramedic or Fire Science Information Sessions. Your questions will be answered by a program representative. Everyone interested in a CBC School of Health Sciences program should attend. These sessions are free and open to the public. Students, friends and family members are welcome and encouraged to attend.

Application Process

The next opportunity to apply for the EMT course will be in January 2022 for a Spring quarter start. The application process is competitive. Applicants must be 18 years of age at the beginning of the quarter they are applying to.

There are no academic prerequisites to take the EMT course. However, the following courses are recommended:

• Completion or placement in ENGL 099 or higher
• Completion of Math 050 or higher placement
• Completion of HSCI 147 - Medical Terminology

The following criteria are required to apply to the EMT program:
  • a typed letter of intent outlining how the applicant plans to use their EMT certification
  • applicant must be 18 years of age
  • valid driver's license
  • a copy of a high school diploma/transcript or equivalent (GED)
  • two letters of recommendation
  • take an EMT entrance exam and participate in an assessment

The EMT entrance exam is mandatory to be considered for acceptance into the program. Applicants who do not attend the exam will be disqualified from the application process.

Criteria for the assessment is teamwork, communication skills, reading and comprehension skills.

Students are accepted based on the scores received from the EMT entrance exam and assessment.

Accepted students will receive an email outlining the next steps to start the program such as starting a background check with the college approved vendor, drug screening, immunizations, textbook and agree to a specific code of ethics.

Accepted students will be required to attend a training class for the American Heart Association BLS Provider CPR certification. Attendance for this class is mandatory for all students.

The Advanced EMT program is not being offered at this time. Please watch this webpage for information on when this program may be offered.



National Background Search & Drug Screen Requirement

As part of the admission requirements for Health Science programs, applicants must successfully pass a criminal background check and drug screen prior to working with patients in clinical areas. The background check and drug screen are paid by the student and administered through a third party company, CastleBranch. In addition to the background check required by CBC, each clinical facility reserves the right to conduct its own criminal background check prior to allowing a student to enter its health care facilities for clinical participation.

Certain criminal convictions, pending charges or negative actions may automatically disqualify a person from having unsupervised access to vulnerable adults, juveniles and children. Clinical facilities reserve the right to accept or decline a student’s placement in its facility.     

EMT skills can be useful for other careers and employment opportunities such as:

  • Firefighters
  • Police
  • Military service members
  • Emergency Room (ER) technicians
  • Dispatchers
  • Emergency response teams
  • Hospitality, entertainment and cruise industries
  • Public Education
  • Ski patrol


Medical Science Center