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EMS graduates honored at pinning ceremony

SYLVA – After spending two years learning how to save lives, recent graduates of Southwestern Community College’s Emergency Medical Science program are now ready to put their skills to use.

The newest members of the EMS profession were honored on May 11 with a pinning ceremony on SCC’s Jackson Campus.

May graduates include Adrian Aguilera of Cherokee, Amanda Hall of Sylva, Donald Kampe of Sylva, Brittney Mazzeo of Seneca, S.C., and D’vorah Nadel of Waynesville. The previous year’s graduates were also invited since they weren’t able to hold a pinning ceremony, and Cashiers resident Sarah Ballentine of the Class of 2020 was able to attend the May 11 event.

“Every one of these students had to work extremely hard to earn this,” said Eric Hester, Southwestern’s EMS Program Coordinator who works alongside Clinical Coordinator Tony Belcher. “This is not an easy profession, and our program reflects that. These graduates persevered, and that tells me they are ready to be on the front lines. I am very proud of them all, and I am extremely glad that we were able to hold a ceremony to honor their accomplishments this spring.”

Graduates of the EMS program are typically the first medical professionals to arrive on the scene of an emergency, and they are trained to provide assistance to patients while transporting them to a hospital.

The EMS program at SCC is now accepting students for the fall semester, which starts Aug. 16. For more information, visit or contact Hester at 828.339.4277 or


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