Meridian Community College is recognized as a leader in higher education programs for public safety personnel. Through the Division of Emergency Service Technology, MCC administers the Mississippi Emergency Service Degree Program (ESDP). This division oversees the delivery of certificate and degree programs in Fire Protection Technology and Emergency Management and Communications Technology. These programs are commonly distributed through a unique method of distance learning. Faculty recognize the difficulty most fire and emergency service professionals encounter when working towards a degree through traditional on-campus meetings. However, ESDP courses are available through web-based resources that allow greater flexibility when completing a degree during on- or off- duty hours.
The Fire Protection and Emergency Management Programs are geared primarily for part-time students (career or volunteer) who are active in the fire service, emergency management, or public safety communication fields. Courses are offered in a format that allows public safety personnel the opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills to realistic problems related to the delivery of emergency services. Depending on the degree and option sought, students typically complete the necessary requirements for graduation within two to four years.
The Division also includes the state’s first Emergency Medical Science Academy. This Academy is responsible for the delivery of all Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) and Paramedic courses, clinical experiences, and testing at MCC. The Emergency Medical Science Academy is a comprehensive learning environment designed specifically for EMS students of all levels. The Academy includes two primary classrooms, a high-fidelity skills laboratory, simulated hospital treatment room, skills evaluation area and fully functional ambulance simulators. Students studying both basic and advanced lifesaving skills will have access to numerous patient simulators for practice. The program also relies on a system of collaborative learning by integrating EMS students with nursing and other health education students in the same medical environment. Throughout the year, the EMSA also schedules several opportunities for professional development and continuing education.
The following requirements apply to certificate and degree options within the Fire Protection or Emergency Management Programs. EMT and Paramedic Program courses are addressed in a separate section of the catalog.
Other required general education courses such as English, math, and Public Speaking are available online through the Mississippi Virtual Community College. Students register for MSVCC courses through Meridian Community College or their local community college.
Progression: To meet graduation requirements for these programs, students must successfully complete the specified courses listed below with a “C” average (GPA of 2.00) or better. A grade of “C” or higher is required in each program specific course to progress in the program.
Minimum admission requirements (In addition to general admission requirements):
Attain a 17 composite score on the ACT;
Score a 251 or higher on the ACCUPLACER NG Reading Section and a 251 or higher on the ACCUPLACER NG Arithmetic Section;
Complete 15 semester hours of program general education coursework with an average of “C” or above at an accredited college or university. Developmental coursework credits do not satisfy this requirement;
Complete a minimum of 100 hours of related certification training through a recognized fire academy or emergency service training institution. Note: Meeting this requirement allows a student to enter the ESD program on a provisional basis. Other admission requirements must be met in order to enroll in general education courses;
Complete a student interview with the program coordinator after all other requirements have been met. Students must contact the program coordinator for enrollment in any Fire Protection Technology or Emergency Management and Communications Technology course.
Public Safety R.O.P.E.S. (Recognition of Prior Education and Service) Advanced Standing Examination Process
Public safety professionals enrolled in the Fire Protection Technology or Emergency Management and Communications Technology Degree Programs can receive college credit for specific courses completed through other emergency service training institutions. Non-academic courses that are recognized by ROPES must meet the following criteria:
- Require a minimum of 45 hours of student contact time;
- Require testing by an appropriate method of student evaluation;
- Meet or exceed the competencies established for the equivalent academic course.
Verification of a student’s credentials will include validation of any documentation provided and the successful completion of a challenge examination. A nominal administrative fee will be assessed to each course completed through the ROPES program. Note: This system of earning college credit does not apply to any ESDP course administered through the Emergency Medical Science Academy.