RN to Paramedic Bridge Program

Accepting applications for Spring 2022 until November 30. Acceptance letters will be sent December 1, 2021 for the January 2022 cohorts.

Program Purpose

The RN-Paramedic bridge program(s) are designed to address areas of the National Paramedic Curriculum absent, or not clearly addressed in RN curricula. The program will prepare the RN for the National Registry paramedic examination. All didactic coursework will be completed online; the clinical portion of the program is dependent on prior skills training and incorporation of some or all paramedic skills into current RN scope of practice:

EMTP 275 Non-EMS Qualified: EMTP 275 is an eight-week hybrid course that consists of six (6) weeks online work, followed by 12-14 days in our region to complete skills training, competency assessments, cadaver lab, EMS clinicals and preparation for the National Registry binary paramedic examinations. EMT certification/licensure is highly recommended, although not required*. This section is for registered nurses who have not performed the following skill sets in conjunction with their job duties: Adult and Pediatric Intubation, Needle Decompression and Needle Cricothyrotomy.  On-site location for skills and cadaver lab will be at Crowder College in Neosho, Missouri.

This course constitutes three phases:

  1. Didactic phase (six weeks)
  2. Clinical rotations/cadaver lab
  3. Wrap-up, including National Registry binary EMT examinations

*If student does not possess an EMT license/certification they are required to attend BLS skills practice on the Friday of Week 8, followed by psychomotor skills testing on Saturday of Week 8. NREMT EMT certification must be obtained prior to testing at the paramedic level.

Students in this course will be required to engage in clinical rotations in our region.  

EMTP 276 EMS Qualified: EMTP 276 is an eight-week self-directed learning (SDL) course spanning eight weeks for registered nurses who have performed/are performing the following skill sets in conjunction with their job duties: Adult and Pediatric Intubation, Needle Decompression and Needle Cricothyrotomy. Crowder EMS must have documentation that verifies the student may exercise the above skills in one of four ways:

  1. A medical director or training officer who has witnessed the skill(s) being performed by the individual according to standard protocol(s) for the respective agency or;
  2. Attending the on-site cadaver lab and performing the above skill sets on the cadaver, or;
  3. Create a video recording the above skills on mannequin/trainer and sending to the lead instructor for evaluation and feedback, or;
  4. Possessing a state-approved license verifying the student can perform certain skills as part of their job duties (e.g., prehospital intubation license)

Students enrolled in this course may waive all clinicals IF the following requirements are met:

  1. Show proof the individual worked in a prehospital environment with the following parameters:
    1. Ground ambulance provider that responds to 911 calls and the RN can provide ALS care to transported patients, or;
    2. Critical care transport where the RN is the team lead, or works as team member with another provider of equivalent experience (e.g., paramedic, transport RT) or;
    3. Air ambulance provider where the RN is the team lead, or works as a team with another provider of equivalent experience (e.g., flight paramedic or flight RT)
  2. If an RN works in a transport setting where the RN is not the primary decision-maker for patient care or part of a team where co-decision making is normal practice, this work experience does not count. Examples of transport experience that will not count are:
    1. Flight/transport RN that works with a physician, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant where the higher-level provider makes all primary decisions regarding patient care and treatment pathways, or;
    2. RN working for an ambulance/ground service but cannot perform ALS skills while on duty

Minimum Entry for All Applicants

In order to be eligible for either course, each applicant must have the following requirements:

  1. Registered nurse (RN) license must be in good standing with a minimum of 1000 hours or RN work experience in the past two (2) years
  2. American Heart Association (AHA) BLS and ACLS provider (American Red Cross accepted, AHA preferred)
  3. Applicants must also meet one of the following criteria:
    1. Two or more years of Emergency or Critical Care experience
    2. One year of RN experience in ER or Critical Care, and one year of pre-hospital experience (totaling two years experience)
    3. One year of RN experience with a current BCEN (Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing) certification and is currently working in emergency or critical care nursing.
  4. Other certifications deemed helpful: CFRN, CTRN, TCRN, CPEN, CEN

All applications will be scored by a predetermined rubric, with the order of acceptance starting with the applicants with the highest scores. Alternates will also be accepted in priority order and will be notified should an individual withdraw from the program. No alternates will be registered after the first week of classes.

Program Requirements:

Physical Requirements: 
An EMS provider is faced with many physical demands and psychological challenges. Please refer to the EMS Education’s Policies and Procedure Manual for more information.

Academic Requirements: 
Students must make a 78% or better as a final grade in this program or is not eligible to take the NREMT-NRP examinations.

Clinical and Behavioral Requirements:
Selected and supervised student experience is required by the program and will be accomplished at selected, regional health care facilities and pre-hospital services. The student is responsible for transportation to these facilities, as well as to any scheduled classes. Program preceptors will observe and evaluate the student’s suitability for the profession and communicate those observations to the designated instructor through evaluation instruments, electronic communication or by phone.

Other Requirements:
Applicants accepted to the program are required to submit a health certificate signed by a licensed physician, physician’s assistant or RNP and should include documentation of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) and chicken pox exposure or inoculations; documentation of Hepatitis B inoculation; Tuberculosis testing; and overall general health of the applicant. A criminal background check and 10-panel drug screen is also required.

The purchase of items such as uniforms housing, fuel, transportation, patches, stethoscopes, shears and other personal equipment and accessories is the financial responsibility of the individual student.


Program Deadlines and Important Dates

Spring Semester (January class)

  • Application deadline: November 15th*
  • Acceptance notification: December 1st
  • Enrollment form return deadline: December 15th**
  • Notification to alternates (if applicable): December 16th
  • Alternate enrollment form return deadline: January 2nd

Fall Semester (August class)

  • Application deadline: July 1st *
  • Acceptance notification: July 15th
  • Enrollment form return deadline: July 31st**
  • Notification to alternates (if applicable): August 1st

*Applications must be fully completed (no partial applications) prior to deadline to be considered for upcoming semester.

**If enrollment forms are not submitted by the assigned deadlines, the applicant forfeits the seat in the course.

Accreditation: This program is nationally accredited by the Committee on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

Getting Started

  1. Submit a college admission application by going here: APPLY NOW
  2. Submit an application to the program found here.
  3. Have any and all college transcripts sent to Crowder’s Records Department
  4. For an estimation of program expenditures, please click here: Tuition & Fees page
  5. Applications may be sent to kyleritter@crowder.edu or paramedic@crowder.edu For more information, contact Kyle Ritter, MBA, CFRN, RN, FP-C, NRP, at 417-455-5416 or e-mail kyleritter@crowder.edu.

Purpose: This program is a self-directed (SDL) course designed to address areas of the National Paramedic Curriculum absent, or not clearly addressed in RN curricula. Concentration will be placed on advanced airway management, pre-hospital patient assessment, trauma and medical emergency management. Pediatrics, 12-Lead ECG’s, trauma and prehospital operations will also be covered. The program will prepare the RN for the National Registry paramedic examination. All didactic coursework will be completed online; psychomotor practice, review and competency checks may either be performed via live feed or through recorded video. Local students may opt to complete their hands-on training on-site at Crowder if desired. Students may engage in clinical rotations in their home state/region, given a contractual agreement has been signed with the respective agencies, and, an emergency physician to act as an associate medical director for that state. Currently, Tennessee, New Mexico, Iowa and Virginia do not allow out-of-state paramedic students to engage in clinical rotations within their state. If you live in one of these states, please contact Crowder EMS before applying to the program.

Students have up to 16 weeks to complete didactic, psychomotor, and clinical requirements.

Why should an RN get a paramedic license?

Employment Opportunities

Becoming well-versed in both fields can assist in expansion of employment opportunity. Companies in the private sector, and organizations in the public domain, desire highly educated people with a well-rounded scope of all around medical care knowledge. RN’s with EMS training and background can find professional specialties that include:

  • Flight Nurse
  • Intensive Care Nurse
  • Emergency Room Nurse
  • EMS Instructor
  • Local EMS Provider

Steve Cathers, RN, FP-C, 2009 Crowder College Paramedic graduate

The Exhilaration/Adrenalin Rush Influence

Some nurses are drawn to the hectic and often unpredictable world of trauma and emergency. It may be in their nature to take control of an emergency situation or play an intricate part of a quick moving crisis. Some may have witnessed paramedics/EMT’s rush into the hospital and provide the details of the patient event and present the case facts. Others were probably drawn into that “rush” without witnessing a scene like that at all. Regardless, those situations typically arise in an ER trauma unit or in the “field”. An on-the-scene ambulance work environment can provide that lifestyle and may be a better fit than in a slower paced hospital setting for some.

The Autonomy Factor

Some nurses may not like the strict rules and regulations that can apply to nursing. Restrictive guidelines, hospital protocols, and close supervision by a doctor(s) can all contribute to a feeling of not being an independent thinker or having the autonomy to make instant decisions. Even though paramedicine also has rules and guidelines, it may have a different “feel” when you are a first responder and it is YOUR actions and decisions that controls a scene. It can provide a sense of freedom from external control or influence, as well as, an impression of independence.

“ I never doubted my volition to take my paramedic course at Crowder College. The instructors were prudent and goal-oriented. The paramedic foundations they have instilled had directed me to pass both the FP-C and CCP-C exams.” – Brayle Lafasni

Program Goals: At the completion of the program the graduate will be able to demonstrate:

• The ability to comprehend, apply, and evaluate the clinical information relative to his/her role as an
entry-level paramedic;
• Technical proficiency in all skills necessary to fulfill the role of an entry-level paramedic; and
• Personal behaviors consistent with professional and employer expectations for the entry-level paramedic.

I have an RN license. Do I qualify, or do I need a specific type of nursing experience? In order to be eligible, you must have: 

Two or more years of Emergency/Critical Care (ICU, CVICU, CCU, etc) experience OR;

One year of emergency and one year of critical care experience OR;

One year of RN experience (ER/Critical Care) with a current EMT license and one year of pre-hospital experience OR;

One year of RN experience with current CFRN, CCRN, CEN or CTRN certification that is within good standing, and is actively working in emergency/critical care AND;

AHA BLS and ACLS Provider within good standing, and Registered Nurse (RN) license must be in good standing with 1000 hours of RN work experience in the last 2 years.
Accreditation: This program is accredited nationally by the Committee on Accreditation of Allied Health Educational Programs (CAAHEP).

How do I get started?

1. Submit a college admission application by going here: College Application
2. Submit an application to the program by going here: Program Application
3. Submit proof of RN licensure
4. Have transcripts of previous college courses sent to the college records department

For an estimation of program expenditures for the Fall, 2019- Summer, 2020 semesters, please click here.

Program Requirements:

Physical Requirements: 
An EMS provider is faced with many physical demands and psychological challenges. Please refer to the EMS Education’s Policies and Procedure Manual for more information.

Academic Requirements: 
Students must make a 78% or better as a final grade in this program or is not eligible to take the NREMT-NRP examinations.

Clinical and Behavioral Requirements:
Selected and supervised student experience is required by the program and will be accomplished at selected, regional health care facilities and pre-hospital services. The student is responsible for transportation to these facilities, as well as to any scheduled classes. Program preceptors will observe and evaluate the student’s suitability for the profession and communicate those observations to the designated instructor through evaluation instruments, electronic communication or by phone.

Other Requirements:
Applicants accepted to the program are required to submit a health certificate signed by a licensed physician, physician’s assistant or RNP and should include documentation of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) and chicken pox exposure or inoculations; documentation of Hepatitis B inoculation; Tuberculosis testing; and overall general health of the applicant. A criminal background check is also required.

The purchase of items such as uniforms housing, fuel, transportation, patches, stethoscopes, shears and other personal equipment and accessories is the financial responsibility of the individual student.

Our first RN-Paramedic program begins fall, 2018. Apply Now!

For more information, contact Kyle Ritter, RN, FP-C, NRP, at 417-455-5416 or e-mail kyleritter@crowder.edu.