Penn College Paramedic Students Learn from the Pros    

WILLIAMSPORT -- The professionals at Williamsport Bureau of Fire know when you live by the Susquehanna River you need to be prepared for a water rescue.

"Being that we have the river here, the city fire department does a substantial number of water rescue calls," said Assistant Fire Chief Mark Killian.

The equipment and boats along the river were there for a different reason Wednesday. Members of Williamsport Bureau of Fire are training the next generation of emergency workers: paramedic students from Penn College.

"We are going to show them how difficult it is to actually get a victim into the boat."

"It's nice to be able to work with Williamsport Fire because they have a lot of experience," said James Babinetz.

It's called "Operations and Rescue Practices for the Paramedic”.  It's a six-week course at Penn College that gives paramedic students a chance to work side by side with professionals right here in Lycoming County.

"We work with the Williamsport Bureau of Fire. We work with Penn College Police and Williamsport Police Department to give our students the hands on and tactical aspects," said Bambi Hawkins.

"Instead of just, 'Oh, we're learning this today. We are just going to read about it,' we can actually go out with these guys who are experiencing it," said Michelle Waughen.

The class doesn't just help the students.

"It's absolutely helping us. The biggest part of the equation is we work hand-in-hand with these folks," said Killian.

"I'm actually glad we have this because as they have been telling us, we could go out our first day and have something like this and work with what we've learned the past two weeks," said Babinetz.

In a few weeks, the students will also be helping out at the Little League World Series in South Williamsport.