Royersford EMS Teams to Help Train Nursing Students

Royersford EMS Teams to Help Train Nursing Students
An Alvernia University student, left, and nursing instructor, as they work together in the school’s nursing program

ROYERSFORD PA – Some nursing students who attend Alvernia University in Reading during coming weeks may be in for the most exciting, and hands-on educational, rides of their lives through Royersford, Spring City, and surrounding municipalities.

The Emergency Services Division of the Royersford Fire Department announced Thursday (July 28, 2022) that it and Alvernia agreed to have students accompany the department’s Friendship Ambulance crews on emergency ride-alongs. The goal, the department said, is to have future nurses “experience pre-hospital medicine, and see interaction with patients, nurses, physicians, and other first responders.”

Friendship Ambulance (at top), as the division is known, is equipped with five advanced life support ambulances, two support vehicles, two para-transit wheelchair transport units, and a bicycle team, its website reported. It serves portions of Montgomery County from its quarters at 269 Green St. in the borough, and portions of Chester County in cooperation with the Liberty Steam Fire Company from its facility in nearby Spring City.

The division also is an approved training center for the American Safety & Health Institute. It provides cardiopulmonary resuscitation, automated external defibrillator, and first aid training for both first responders and the general public.

The department said it was “excited to forge this new partnership with Alvernia University, and look(s) forward to working alongside the students and staff to provide an amazing experience.” Specifics of the program – its intended start date, the length and type of assignments for students involved, and the number of students it expects will participate – were not immediately available.

Alvernia has been aggressive in expanding programs for what it recently called “a much-needed influx of skilled healthcare professionals” in adjacent Berks County and beyond.

It’s already in a second phase of expansion for the newly named John R. Post Center at Reading CollegeTowne in the city’s downtown. The project began in late 2019, it explained in a media release earlier this month, and intends to “address the need for (registered nurses) in the local health care industry by relocating, expanding, and modernizing the university’s School of Nursing.”

Alvernia considers its nursing programs as one of its “flagship academic offerings,” university Provost and Senior Vice President Glynis Fitzgerald said. It also considers “experiental learning” – like that to be offered in Royersford – of high value. “We look forward to creating an expanded pipeline of skilled nurses that will benefit the health of our local community for generations to come.”

Following Thursday’s meeting EMS leadership team members said they were given a tour Alvernia’s campus, and saw where the students they will help train in the future receive their initial education.

  • Editor’s Note: This story was edited and revised July 29 at 9:15 a.m. to add references to the univerity’s high regard for experiential learning.

Photo of an Alvernia University student and instructor provided by the university
Friendship Ambulance photo by The Post