Colby Emergency Response

    Colby Emergency Response

    Emergencies: 207-859-5911
    General Contact: ColbyEMS@colby.edu

    Colby Emergency Response (CER) was founded to provide the Colby College campus with exceptional and reliable emergency medical coverage 24 hours a day during the school term.

    The service is a volunteer first-responder organization whose goal is to provide optimum patient care utilizing resources both on and off campus. CER aims to provide emergency care to patients as well as to transfer care in the most appropriate manner, whether it is to the Garrison-Foster Health Center, Delta Ambulance, Waterville Fire & EMS, or another medical facility. The organization shall also provide members with opportunities for obtaining continuing education as well as experience in the emergency medical field. It is the responsibility of the officers and members to stay up to date with Maine and national EMS protocols and apply them in such a manner that best suits the Colby College campus.

    Emergency Information and CER

    The Garrison-Foster Health Center does not provide emergency medical care. We employ the services of Colby Emergency Response (CER), a student-run group of emergency medical technicians, who are able to respond to a wide variety of medical emergencies. If you have a medical emergency, please call 207-859-5911 and Security will dispatch CER rescuers. When in doubt, call for CER. When CER responds, they will provide medical care and make one of three determinations:

    • Dispatch Delta Ambulance for transport to the emergency room
    • Provide transportation to the Garrison-Foster Health Center
    • Clear patient if no medical treatment is required

    Please remember that CER rescuers are students on this campus who volunteer their time to provide professional medical care. CER often responds with Security but is not a disciplinary body. All services provided by CER are free of charge. If Delta Ambulance is required to provide transport, fees may be assessed to your insurance.

    CER rescuers are trained to respond to a wide variety of medical emergencies including, but not limited to, traumatic injuries, severe illness, alcohol and drug related illness, and mental health emergencies.

    About

    CER is a student-run organization of volunteer Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) working as an extension of the Garrison-Foster Health Center. As EMTs, the squad provides on-scene basic life support (BLS) for medical emergencies within the Colby College community. CER is a non-transport, first-responder service that requires minimal licensing at the EMT level. Although all of CERs members must maintain a Maine EMT certification or higher, CER is not a Maine EMS (MEMS) licensed service. CER operates under protocols provided by the medical director, Dr. Paul Berkner, and the Garrison-Foster Health Center. The Garrison-Foster Health Center also acts as medical control. Current protocols are modifications of the Maine state EMS protocols, with additional consideration given to ALS-intercepts and patient transport. When prudent, patients are transported to MaineGeneral-Thayer Emergency Department in Waterville or transferred to Advanced Life Support (ALS) care—most often provided by Delta Ambulance and Waterville Fire/Rescue.

    During the academic year, CER is available to members of the Colby community 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Volunteer rescuers run 24-hour shifts on a per-diem basis. CER has two levels of rescuers: a Rescue-One—the senior rescuer on call who is the primary rescuer in charge of overseeing the scene—and the Rescue-Two, the junior rescuer on call. There is always a Rescue-One on duty when CER is in service. Additional rescuers may be placed in service for concerts and other special events that require additional personnel. While on duty, rescuers carry rescue packs and radios and have access to additional gear (including oxygen, suction, an OB kit, and another defibrillator) stored in the security vehicles. CER’s equipment inventory is based on the standard required of a Maine BLS first-response agency; however, the inventory has been modified to this service’s unique operations on a collegiate campus without an ambulance. CER is dispatched by Colby Security and works closely with their officers; officers respond simultaneously with CER and are always available to assist on scene.

    In addition to providing emergency medical care, CER also serves as an on-campus resource for emergency medicine education. Some services provided include: Continuing Education Unit (CEU) opportunities, guest speakers, information about EMS-related classes offered in the area, and general information about EMS and EMS-related employment opportunities. American Heart Association CPR/BLS classes are also offered by CER periodically throughout the semester.

    History

    In 1978 a group of EMT-trained Colby students saw the need for a first-responder service on campus. Soon, these students founded Student Primary Emergency Care Service (SPECS). Cate Talbot Ashton ’80 recalls that Jim Elmore ’80 and Alice Domar ’80 were the founders; they took an EMT-B class with Waterville Fire Rescue. At first, SPECS had no formal communications system and it was up to the nurse on duty to call each EMT’s room with the hopes that someone was there. In 1979, with assistance from Health Services, Security, and Student Government, SPECS was given radio pagers, which aided communications. Keep in mind that this was the era when 911 EMS services were beginning to start around the country; Colby was already ahead of the curve.

    As the years progressed, so did SPECS. A Jan Plan EMT course was offered soon after SPECS’ founding and student interest in the EMS system grew. By 1985 SPECS boasted more than a dozen members. As the 1980s progressed, the call volume began to pick up and instead of responding to a handful of incidents, SPECS members now responded to dozens of incidents each year. In 1988 SPECS’ name was changed to Colby Emergency Response (CER).

    Over the next several years, CER expanded and changed the location of its squad room several times, from Dana to Roberts to its current location in the Garrison-Foster Health Center. CER saw some major calls in the 1990s, with students falling from windows and a car accident on campus. As always, motivated and professional student EMTs responded and helped to protect lives. CER now boasted a membership of more than 25 rescuers.

    With the new millennium came some major changes for CER. In 2003 the health center closed 24-hour care due to a national nursing shortage. Lacking applicable protocols when the health center closed, CER was forced to limit its operations to the hours when the health center was open. Shortly thereafter, 24-hour care returned as did 24/7 service by CER.

    In 2009 the College announced that the Health Center would be shutting down overnight care permanently due to a lack of available resources and limited use of the overnight services by students. CER was well prepared to fill this apparent gap and under the direction of the medical director of the College, CER continued to remain a 24/7 operation. A highly trained group of senior rescuers were charged as the primary caregivers to students when the Health Center was closed. If needed, these rescuers had the services of local hospitals, Delta Ambulance, and the on-call practitioner to assist with calls beyond their level of care. As a result of these recent changes, CER’s relationship with these organizations has continued to thrive due to the high quality of care provided by CER’s rescuers.

    At the same time, with national concerns regarding EMS response times and scene safety coming to the spotlight, CER added another component to its relationship with Colby Security. On weekends, a senior rescuer would now ride with a security officer to provide care to students more quickly. In the coming years, CER will undoubtedly continue to grow and thrive, as it has since its inception in 1978.


    FAQ

    To reach CER in an emergency dial the emergency security number: 207-859-5911. Be prepared to say where you are and give a brief description of why you are calling.

    CER is dispatched by Colby Security and works closely with their officers. Security officers respond simultaneously with CER and are always available to assist on scene. Security serves as an extra set of hands as needed and are on scene to assure scene safety for CER, the patient, and bystanders. Due to high call volume on the weekends, Rescue-1s ride with security in the security vehicle from 23:00-2:00 to ensure the fastest response time possible.

    CER responds to a wide variety of calls including difficulty breathing, syncopal episodes, falls with injury, and allergic reactions, diabetic emergencies, and intoxication, to name a few.

    To join CER you must be a certified EMT-B (or higher) in the state of Maine. If you are not already a certified EMT but would like to join CER, you can become an EMT in the EMT class offered during Jan Plan or we can help you find another EMT class off campus during the summer or the semester. Once you obtain your EMT certification, contact Brittany Bossi (btbossi@colby.edu), our deputy chief of personnel and training, to set up a time for orientation. At orientation you will be given a uniform shirt and it will be decided then when you will start running shifts with CER. Once you are a member of CER, you will also then be expected to come to trainings and continuing education classes (once a month, usually from 19:00-21:00, though times vary).

    • Maine EMT-B License
    • AHA CPR Certification
    • Proof of Hepatitis-B Vaccination
    • Blood Borne Pathogens Course (taken online once you join CER)
    • Sign up for at least two weekday shifts and one weekend shift a month (Note: Just because you sign up for those shifts doesn’t mean that you will get them all. Most Rescue-2’s work 1-2 shifts a month and not all Rescue-2’s get a weekend shift every month).
    • Attend at least one training a month (in the Health Center from 16:00-18:00).
    • Attend monthly continuing education classes.

    CER is a 24/7 service. Shifts are 24 hours long (19:00-19:00). So if you were on duty on Friday your shift would start Friday at 19:00 and would end on Saturday at 19:00.

    Typically there are two EMTs on duty, a Rescue-1 and a Rescue-2. For special events such as concerts there may be extra rescuers on duty. There must be a Rescue-1 on duty for CER to be in service.

    The Rescue-One and Rescue-Two have the same level of certification. They work alongside one-another to assess and treat each patient with care that meets Maine EMS and CER protocols. They are held to equal standards of care, but the Rescue-One has gone through a semester long training process to be able to make the final transport decision and ensure the crew provides quality medical care. Rescue-Ones are also on duty once a week whereas the Rescue-Two is on duty one – three times per month. They are also responsible for submitting all run reports to the Medical Director within twenty-four hours following a shift.

    CER members are required to attend a minimum of one training per month but are encouraged to come to as many trainings as they can. Members are also required to attend the monthly continuing education class.

    The EMTs on duty go about their normal day and just carry a bag of equipment and a radio with them. If they get a call, they respond by foot from wherever they may be on campus. If an EMT gets a call during class, they are allowed to leave class to respond to the call. EMTs can be wherever they want while they are on duty as long as they remain on campus. Due to high call volume on Friday and Saturday nights, the Rescue-One rides along with security from 23:00-2:00 to ensure faster response time.

    CER has a few transport options despite the fact that we are a non-transport service. In some cases CER can escort patients via Colby College Security. If it is deemed necessary, patients can be transported to the appropriate medical facility via Delta Ambulance if the situation warrants transfer of patient care to a higher level of service.

    No, CER is a volunteer-based EMS service so members are not paid for the shifts that they work.

    In order to become an EMT-B you must take an EMT-B course and take the national registry exam to obtain an EMT-B certification. Colby College offers an emergency medical technician class during Jan Plan in which you receive all of the training necessary to take both the practical and written exams necessary to obtain your license. EMT-B classes are also offered as semester-long courses and summer programs, including courses at Kennebec Valley Community College; however it’s slightly more challenging to take a semester-long EMT course with a full course load at Colby.

    Once you take the EMT-B class you must take a practical exam. If you pass the practical exam you then must sit for a written exam. If you pass both of these exams you will be a nationally registered EMT. With your NREMT license you will then need to apply for a state license. Applying for a state license often involves a background check and driving record check; however this is state dependent so check your state’s EMS website to see exactly what you need to do.

    If you already have an EMT-B license in another state you will need to apply for reciprocity in Maine.

    Of course! If you’re not yet an EMT but are in the process of becoming an EMT or are trying to decide if you want to be an EMT, you’re more than welcome to stop by trainings and/or our continuing education classes to see what CER and EMS are all about.

    Trainings are typically held on two different days and times to help accommodate for the various schedules of CER members. Training is held in the Garrison-Foster Health Center. At trainings we simulate scenarios and work on practical skills to keep our skills and knowledge up to date and ensure that we are providing the best possible patient care on scene. CER members are required to attend a minimum of one training per month but are encouraged to attend as many trainings as possible.

    Continuing education classes are held approximately once a month at Colby and are absolutely mandatory for all CER members. Continuing educations classes are usually taught by an outside paramedic and cover a wide range of skill sets and specialized topics within EMS (e.g. ALS assists, pediatric emergencies, efficient CPR, water rescues, etc.). These continuing education opportunities count toward the continuing education credits needed to maintain your Maine EMS license.

    All information regarding CER calls and patient information is kept completely confidential. As emergency medical technicians, all members of Colby Emergency Response are expected to know and abide by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) privacy rules and regulations. Any specific inquiries regarding CER operations or patients are to be referred to the chief of service. Information pertinent to CER is to be treated confidentially and should not be shared to private citizens, news media, security officers, deans, and/or other Colby employees, students, or any other individual not actively involved with the situation. This includes information about runs and forms, patients, investigations, personnel, and operations. Any information regarding patients may never be shared with anyone other than emergency personnel immediately involved in that patient’s care. This includes, but is not limited to, a patient’s name and/or medical condition as well as the overall nature and/or details of the call. Each member is required to sign an oath of confidentiality.

    CER Team

    Rescue-1s and Officers

    Picture of Collette Gould

    Hometown: Bow, N.H.

    Class of 2019

    I am a Biology and French double major. On campus, I work as an assistant in the athletic training room, am co-president of the biology club, a member of the Pre-Health Society, a COOT leader, and part of Colby Dancers. I took the EMT JanPlan my freshman year as the first step to my intended future career in medicine. My love for EMS developed as I worked for Newport Fire & EMS over the summers and began working for Colby EMS my second semester freshman year. My future goals are to go to medical school and hopefully become a cardiologist!

    Picture of Hannah Springhorn

    Hometown: Guilford, C.T.

    Class of 2019

    I am double majoring in Physics and Art History. On campus, I am a three-sport varsity athlete competing in cross country, indoor track and outdoor track. I am also a member of the Women in Physics Society, a CCAK mentor, and I do research in the art history department. I am also a Colby Outdoor Orientation Trip leader, and in my free time you can find me on the trails or in the museum. After Colby, I hope to attend medical school!

    Picture of John Baker

    Hometown: Evanston, Ill.

    Class of 2019

    I am a history major and theatre minor. When I’m not on duty you might see me out for a run or at the gym or in a play pretending I know how to sing. After Colby I plan to take a gap year, go to law school and become a licensed personal trainer.

    Picture of Maggie

    Hometown: Norfolk, Massachusetts

    Class of 2020

    I am a Psychology-Neuroscience major! Currently at Colby in addition to CER, I am a Junior High Tutoring co-leader and tutor, a CCAK mentor, and a Psychology department tutor. I have also been involved in Let’s Get Ready as a SAT math prep teacher and tutoring in Latin. In my free time, I enjoy reading, watching Netflix, traveling, volunteering, and exploring the outdoors. I hope to go on eventually to graduate school to pursue a Ph.D. in Clinical Neuropsychology!

    Picture of Brittany

    South Berwick, Maine

    Class of 2018

    I am a biology major with the hopes of going to nursing school to become a nurse practitioner after my undergraduate studies. In addition to CER, on campus I am involved in the COOT program as a leader and a COOT committee member. I am also events committee head for the outing club. In my spare time, you can find me hiking in the mountains of New Hampshire, skiing at sugarloaf, rock climbing and enjoying a nice cup of green tea!

    Photo of Meghan

    Hometown: Chatham, N.J.

    Class of 2019

    Hello fans of CER! I’m an English major and Chemistry minor. Besides working with CER, I play on the women’s rugby team and lead sexual violence prevention trainings for first-years and sophomores. I enjoy reading, cooking, hiking, and being outside. After I graduate, I hope to attend medical school, PA school, or get a master’s in public health. 

     Rescue-2s

    Picture of Mike

    Hometown: New Canaan, CT

    Class of 2018

    I am a Biochemistry major and Italian minor. Outside of CER I am a CCAK mentor and an Italian tutor. After Colby I hope to attend medical school. 

    Picture of Gabe

    Hometown: Madison, Wisconsin

    Class of 2018

    I am a senior physics major! On campus I am the captain of the men’s Nordic Ski Team. I have been a member of CER since my junior year and am using my time with emergency medicine to prepare for a career in sports medicine after graduation. 

    Picture of Elizabeth

    Hometown: Rehoboth, Massachusetts

    Class of 2018

    I am a biology and religious studies double major. I became an EMT through the JanPlan program and love being able to practice my medical skills through CER!  When I am not in class, you can usually find me down at the woodsmen field, throwing axes or polishing my bowsaw skills.

    Picture of Julia

    Hometown: Westminster, MA

    Class of 2018

    I am a senior neurobiology major! I enrolled in the EMT JanPlan class my Freshman year at Colby, and joined CER as a sophomore. I am also part of the track team, Colby Outdoors Club, and Biology Club. My hobbies include hiking, exercising, and collecting pumpkins.

    Picture of Olivia

    Hometown: Wellesley, Massachusetts

    Class of 2018

    I am a Biology with a concentration in Neuroscience and STS (Science, Technology and Society) double major. I am interested in health and medicine and my goal is to attend medical school. Outside of the classroom I am a CCAK mentor, part of Mediocre Acapella, Colby Dancers and the outing club. 

    Picture of Lisa

    Hometown: : Fort Collins, Colorado

    Class of 2019

    I am majoring in Psychology with a concentration in Neuroscience. I am a leader in the Colby Outing Club and love doing various outdoor activities including skiing, hiking, and whitewater kayaking. I hope to pursue a career in medical research when I graduate.

    Picture of Randy

    Hometown: Sunnyvale, CA 

    Class of 2019

    I have been a part of CER since his freshman year of college. I can deal with almost any type of injury, but anything to do with kneecaps is off the table. At Colby I am studying Physics and Psychology. I am planning on pursuing physics after graduation and hoping to find a career mapping the stars. In my free time I am an amateur astronomer and enjoy relaxing in my hammock.

    Picture of Laura

    Hometown: Andover, Massachusetts

    Class of 2019

    I am a Biology major! Aside from CER, I work in the Athletic Training room on campus and am a CCAK mentor. In my spare time, I enjoy running and cooking. After Colby, I hope to become a Physician’s Assistant!

    Picture of Holli

    Hometown: Plymouth, Vermont

    Class of 2019

    I am a Mathematics Major with a concentration in Statistics. On campus I am the Community Advisory (CA) of Marylow Dorm, Student Athletic Advisory Committee (SAAC) Co-President, a CCAK mentor, a member of the advisory committee for CCAK, a math tutor at Winslow Junior High and George J. Mitchell School, and a member of the 2019 class council. I am apart of EMS because I love to help people and support people even during their worst times. 

    Picture of Dylan

    Hometown: Poolesville, Maryland

    Class of 2019

    I began my EMS career in conjunction with my firefighting; beyond CER, I’m a volunteer Firefighter EMT with Waterville Fire-Rescue. On campus, I’m a philosophy major with an interest in American, analytic, existential, and religious philosophies and am considering graduate school for after my time at Colby. When I’m not in class or downtown chasing calls, I’m hidden away somewhere playing my fiddle, succumbing to my addiction to American Old-Time music. On campus, I’m a part of both the Ballroom Dance club and Mayflower Hill Broadcasting as a writer. I will most certainly keep EMS and emergency response a part of my life after graduation.

    Picture of Emma

    Hometown: Ellicott City, Maryland

    Class of 2020

    I am a Biology major with a concentration in Neuroscience! I have spent over 100 hours volunteering in the Trauma Resuscitation Unit at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, Maryland, and this work inspired me to enter the world of EMS in college to have direct experience with patient care and serve my community. In addition to being a member of CER, I am a tutor in the biology department and am hoping to help pioneer work surrounding disability and chronic illness inclusion on campus with some of my fellow mules! In my free time, I love to sing Broadway tunes with my roommates, watch Netflix, binge eat Bakeology cookies, and FaceTime with my dog (oh, and my family too). After Colby, I am planning to attend nursing school or graduate school to further my career in medicine!

    Picture of Sam

    Hometown: Windham, Maine

    Class of 2020

    I am double majoring in biology with a neuroscience concentration and music. In addition to CER, I am a music director for Powder and Wig, a member of Colby Symphony Orchestra, Colby Co/legium, Pre-Health Society, and Biology Club. I can also be found working on campus as a research assistant and a parlor musician. I joined CER to gain experience in the field of medicine and to try to make Colby a safer place for everyone in the community. After graduating from Colby, I plan to attend an M.D./Ph.D program and go on to work in the field of neurology.

    Picture of Jodie

    Hometown: Ningo, China

    Class of 2020

    Hi, I’m an Art and Global Studies double major. I am currently working at Bixler. In my free time, I enjoy reading, painting, taking photos, playing some violin and drinking tea.

    Picture of Charlie

    Hometown: Durango, Colorado

    Class of 2020

    I am majoring in Global Studies / Global Health. I have both an NREMT and a WFR, and I have a background primarily in wilderness care and search and rescue. Besides CER, I am involved in student health on campus (SHOC), and Colby surf club. My hobbies include mountain biking and skiing!

    Picture of Thomas

    Hometown: Van Buran, Maine

    Class of 2020

    Hey! I’m majoring in Chemistry-Biochemistry. Here at Colby, I work as a student research assistant in the Rice Lab, a library assistant at Olin, and a tutor for General Chemistry as well as Series and Multivariable Calculus. I am also involved with the Megalomaniacs A Capella group, the Pre-Health Society, the Chemistry Club, the Colby Music Incubator, and – of course – Colby Emergency Response. I hope to attend Tufts Medical School in pursuit of becoming a pediatric oncologist!

    Picture of Lauren

    Hometown: North Attleboro, Massachusetts

    Class of 2020

    I am a Psychology and French double major with a minor in Chemistry. I am also on the Pre-Med track! In addition to CER, I am involved in French Club, the French Student Advisory Board, ASA, and CCAK. I am also a research assistant in the Psychology and Sociology departments. In my free time, I enjoy photography and spending time with my friends (and dogs!) In the future, I hope to attend medical school and possibly pursue a career in psychiatry, though I am open to exploring other options as well.

    Picture of SJ

    Hometown: California

    Class of 2020

    I am majoring in psychology with a neuroscience concentration, and I have a minor in Italian Studies. Besides CER, I am involved on campus as a CCAK mentor, research assistant for the health psychology lab and emotion and moods lab. In my free time, I enjoy going climbing with the CMC, going outside with the COC, and playing volleyball. I hope to pursue a career in the medical field after Colby.

    Picture of Calvin

    Hometown: Short Hills, New Jersey

    Class of 2020

    I am a Biology with a concentration in Neuroscience major. On campus, I am a member of the varsity football team as well as a member of the Woodsmen team. I during my free time, I take photos for most of the winter and spring sports at their home games and share them with the team. I first got medical experience when working as a ski patroller at Okemo Mountain in Vermont for three years, which led me to be interested in medicine. I took the EMT Jan Plan course my freshman year and began to work with CER that February. You can find me down in the athletic center lifting, at any of the sporting events on campus, or just in my room listening to music and playing video games or watching Netflix. After Colby, I plan to attend Medical School and hopefully become an Orthopedic Surgeon.

    Picture of Megan

    Hometown: Andover, Massachusetts

    Class of 2021

    I am a First Year Student from Andover, Massachusetts hoping to study biology and psychology! I took an EMT course in Massachusetts this previous summer and am excited to help keep Colby safe and healthy! Here at Colby, I am a member of the softball team, a competitive ballroom dancer and in the Outing and Pottery clubs. In the future, I would like to go the PA school or join the Peace Corps.

    Picture of Adrienne

    Hometown: West Windsor, New Jesery

    Class of 2021

    I am an intended psychology and art major. I went to EMT school while I was still in New Jersey. I am also a member of Powder and Wig; and in my free time, I like hiking, theater, reading, and playing with my dog!

    Picture of Sam

    Hometown: New York City, NY

    Class of 2021

    Hi! I’ve been an EMT for about two years now. I’m still undecided on my major, but I have a strong feeling it’ll be medicine related. When I’m not saving lives, or going on and on about EMT stuff, you can find me throwing a Frisbee on campus, backpacking, watching movies, or catering at Bon Appétit. When winter comes, you’ll see me snowboarding, drinking lots of hot chocolate, and playing a lot more Xbox in pajamas.

    Picture of Bia

    Hometown: New Jersey

    Class of 2021

    Hi everyone! Although I don’t have an intended major, I’m really interested in biology. But I’m also excited to explore other studies here at Colby like psychology, philosophy, and literature, to name a few. I hope to someday attend medical school and pursue emergency medicine as a career (which is a pretty good reason to be in CER). I’m also a part of the Questbridge E-Board and pottery club. Aside from school, I love laughing with my friends and family, watching weird movies, eating anything with chocolate, and taking naps by the pond!

    Picture of Jon

    Hometown: New Jesery

    Class of 2021

    I plan on majoring in biology with a concentration in biochemistry so I can go into research after graduation. When not taking shifts, I row for the novice crew team, swim for the water polo team, and perform for Powder & Wig and the Improv club. You can find me hanging in Leonard with my friends watching anything ranging from cinematic classics to bad vine comps.