Friendswood ISD receives $50,000 ambulance simulator via UTMB President’s Cabinet Award

Friendswood High School teacher Carla Burris, bottom left, and her emergency medical technician students will now have access to an ambulance simulator as part of their training. (Courtesy Friendswood ISD Education Foundation)
Friendswood High School teacher Carla Burris, bottom left, and her emergency medical technician students will now have access to an ambulance simulator as part of their training. (Courtesy Friendswood ISD Education Foundation)

Friendswood High School teacher Carla Burris, bottom left, and her emergency medical technician students will now have access to an ambulance simulator as part of their training. (Courtesy Friendswood ISD Education Foundation)

Friendswood High School recently received a simulated ambulance to help fully launch its emergency medical technician program. The simulator was installed Jan. 25.

The district’s EMT courses are new for the 2020-21 school year and were approved by the board of trustees in August. FHS health science teacher Carla Burris had been campaigning for the ambulance simulator since fall 2019, before the course was formally introduced, according to a Friendswood ISD Education Foundation press release.

Burris and Ashley Adair, the education foundation’s executive director, applied for and received a 2020 UTMB President’s Cabinet Award to fund the $50,000 simulator, per the release. The grant is the first of its kind for the foundation, Adair said in the release.

Burris and her students received word of the grant funds in September, a moment Burris said was a very pleasant surprise.

“With everything going on in the world right now, I did not think it would actually happen,” Burris said in the release. “[The students and I] were shocked. I was so excited that this missing piece of the puzzle—the real-world piece—was finally coming to fruition.”


The courses are taught as part of FISD’s dual-credit partnership with College of the Mainland. COM paid FISD about $1,600 in the fall semester for COM’s embedded faculty teaching EMSP 1501, which is part of a two-course EMT sequence, per board documents.

The district is expanding its offerings to provide more robust, individualized programming for students on their journeys to college, career and military readiness, FISD leaders said in December.

“[Authentic learning] is learning you do by experiencing it, learning you can put your hands on,” FISD Superintendent Thad Roher said in the press release. “The simulated ambulance [will] bring a whole new dynamic to the launch of our EMT program, [providing] not just learning you can put your hands on, but learning you can literally put your whole body into.”

EMSP 1501 students participate in 11 class hours, or contact hours, each week for 16 weeks; EMSP 1260, the next course in the sequence, requires students to participate in six contact hours a week. There is a $271 cost associated with participation in both courses, per board documents.

Preparing for the future of health care and instilling passion in future workforce members is more important than ever amid the coronavirus pandemic, said Barbara Slusher, chair of the UTMB President’s Cabinet Awards Committee, said in the release.

Burris said she is looking forward to seeing students continue their investment in EMT training.

“My hope is that [my students] become competent, confident [health care] professionals,” she said in the release. “I’m passionate, and now, I see that passion in the students, which is truly amazing.”
By Colleen Ferguson
A native central New Yorker, Colleen Ferguson worked as an editorial intern with the Cy-Fair and Lake Houston | Humble | Kingwood editions of Community Impact before joining the Bay Area team in 2020. Colleen graduated from Syracuse University in 2019, where she worked for the campus's independent student newspaper The Daily Orange, with a degree in Newspaper and Online Journalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and a degree in Spanish language and culture. Colleen previously interned with The Journal News/lohud, where she covered the commute in the greater New York City area.


MOST RECENT

Learn about the candidates for Alvin ISD board of trustees Position 2. (Taylor Jackson Buchanan/Community Impact Newspaper)
Election Q&A: Alvin ISD board of trustees Position 2

Learn more about the candidates for Alvin ISD board of trustees Position 2.

The Crafty Crab Cajun Seafood and Bar is coming to Pearland. (Papar Faircloth/Community Impact Newspaper)
The Crafty Crab Cajun Seafood and Bar coming to Pearland in May

The Creole seafood chain is opening on Broadway Street near the Pearland Town Center.

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo speaks at an April 19 press conference at a mass-vaccination site at NRG Park. (Screenshot courtesy Facebook Live).
Harris County accepting walk-ins for vaccine at NRG Park

As demand for vaccines has fallen, officials are looking for ways to make them more accessible.

Vaccinations at any of Kelsey-Seybold Clinic's 26 Greater Houston-area locations are available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. by appointment only at no cost to the individual or family. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Houston-based Kelsey-Seybold Clinic expands vaccine eligibility to age 16 and older

Vaccinations at any of Kelsey-Seybold Clinic's 26 Greater Houston-area locations are available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. by appointment only at no cost to the individual or family.

The Burger Joint, which has two Inner Loop locations, is opening a third in Friendswood, near Baybrook Mall. (Courtesy Emma Whalen)
The Burger Joint to open in Friendswood near Baybrook this year

A more specific timeline has not been established, a restaurant representative said.

Greg Hill
Former Pearland City Council member announces candidacy for 239th District Court judge

Former Pearland City Council member Greg Hill has announced his candidacy for 239th District Court judge in Brazoria County, according to an April 16 news release.

Costco Business Centers, of which there are only about 15 in the country, carry different products and provide a different shopping experience to members than do traditional Costco Wholesale stores. (Courtesy Costco Wholesale)
Costco Business Center being built in Stafford; see live music in The Woodlands and more top Houston-area news

Read the top business and community news from the Houston area from the past week.

The program, which began this week in San Marcos, gives Amazon and Whole Foods employees and contractors direct access to COVID-19 vaccinations. (Courtesy Amazon)
Amazon begins rollout of statewide vaccination clinics for employees

The program, which began this week in San Marcos, gives Amazon and Whole Foods employees and contractors direct access to COVID-19 vaccinations.

Pearland Hearing Aids & Audiology is located at 2518 Westminister Road. (Courtesy Pearland Hearing Aids & Audiology)
Pearland Hearing Aids & Audiology celebrates 5-year anniversary

The business offers diagnostic hearing testing, evaluations, hearing technology and more.

According to city documents, $10 million-$15 million is available for 10 locally supported projects in U.S. House District 22. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Pearland to submit Smith Ranch Road widening for possible federal funding

According to city documents, $10 million-$15 million is available for 10 locally supported projects in U.S. House District 22.

Federal funding is set aside for public schools to address effects of the pandemic. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Why Texas has not yet distributed $18 billion in federal funds intended for public schools

As budget decisions loom for school districts across Texas, state leaders are holding on to federal funds intended for public schools to use in addressing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.