EMTomorrow was founded in Washington, D.C. with the mission to create an accessible emergency medical service (EMS) education pathway for underserved young adults. In Washington D.C., financial and logistical barriers exist that exclude low-income individuals from accessing EMT certification training. Existing EMS courses in D.C. cost between $2,000 and $5,000 in tuition, with programs offering few, if any, scholarships. Additionally, current courses are concentrated in Wards 2, leaving a geographic gap in course offerings in eastern D.C. Ward 2 is also highly inaccessible by public transportation. As a result of this inaccessibility, many residents from Wards 5, 6, 7, and 8, ~70% of whom identify as Black/African American, are excluded from starting a career in EMS.
Increasing access to EMT training will create opportunities for secure employment among the ~11% of unemployed adults in these Wards, and it will also improve healthcare delivery by creating a workforce that reflects the cultural and racial/ethnic diversity of the population being served.
EMTomorrow aims to train 45 participants per year in a completely free National Registry EMT-B (NREMT) course and to guarantee their placement into paying jobs as an EMT upon program completion. We have partnered with the largest EMS employers in the city, including D.C. Fire and EMS and American Medical Response, to ensure that all students have immediate job placement into paid positions. The EMTomorrow course will also teach employability and soft skills, a focus in high demand by employers. In effect, EMTomorrow is not only providing a pathway to an in-demand and fulfilling career (that also offers opportunity for future advancement), but is also improving the quality of EMS services for D.C. residents.
Funded by Washington, DC (December 2021)