Thursday, March 4, 2010

Centennial College School of Community and Health Studies

When Graham Mitchell graduated from Centennial College's Paramedic program in 1992 the job market was in the doldrums of recession. So like many freshly minted college and university graduates, he found part-time work where he could.

It was during a contract with an air medevac service in Northern Ontario that Mitchell realized the extensive role private companies play in the public health-care system. He joined two partners who together purchased Parkview EMS, a small Toronto-based firm that had formed to provide medical emergency services at local horseracing tracks.

"Public services like Toronto EMS are mandated to respond to 911 calls, which means they may leave a stadium unattended," says Mitchell, explaining the rise of private EMS services that are now fixtures at major sports events and concerts.

They grew the business to the point where today Parkview provides emergency medical services at events hosted by the Air Canada Centre, Rogers Centre, Molson Amphitheatre, BMO Field and other facilities.

More recently, Orangeville-based Parkview found a new market in "aeromedical repatriation," providing travel insurance companies with physicians, nurses and paramedics to escort patients worldwide, typically bringing them home for treatment in Canada, the U.S. or England after a medical episode or accident.

Mitchell credits his excellent training at Centennial College for his successful career as a paramedic – and as an entrepreneur.

Centennial's School of Community and Health Studies is recognized for its innovation, high academic standards and faculty-led applied research in the area of healthcare and educational technology.

Since 1973, when the Ontario government transferred responsibility for nursing education from the province's hospitals to its nursing program college, Centennial has earned an enduring reputation for its health sciences programs.

The college teaches a full range of nursing programs, including a BScN Collaborative program with Ryerson University, Practical Nursing and RPN Bridging to University Nursing with flex options, and a Practical Nursing Certificate to Diploma program. The latter allow students to meet practice requirements in Ontario or upgrade their English communication skills while preparing for advanced training.

Programs are offered at the state-of-the-art Centennial Science and Technology Centre, which opened in 2004 on Morningside Avenue just south of Hwy 401. Students hone their skills in advanced lab and clinical simulation facilities – including a fully outfitted ambulance body installed in a classroom!

Students gain valuable experience through the college's extensive network of clinical placement opportunities at hospitals and other community facilities, while enjoying a personalized school experience.

In addition to nursing and paramedic programs, Centennial offers a range of certificate and diploma programs including Pharmacy Technician, Food and Nutrition Management, Esthetics, Workplace Wellness, Massage Therapy and related disciplines.

Working professionals can also choose from a wide variety of part-time continuing education courses delivered in the classroom or remotely.

Centennial College will afford you every opportunity to transform your interest into a satisfying career where you can make a difference – just like Graham Mitchell did. At every point along the way you have access to the knowledge, expertise and personalized attention that will allow you to become a true helping professional.

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