By Shannon Adams
Special to The Communitarian
Linda Lefevre, the director of Continuing and Professional Studies Admissions at Delaware Valley University, is coordinating the efforts for its Degree Completion Program on DCCC’s Marple campus.
The Degree Completion Program is designed to help students, graduating with an associate’s degree from DCCC, earn their bachelor’s degree in a convenient and affordable way, while remaining on the Marple campus. The programs being offered are business administration, counseling psychology, criminal justice and media and communication.
I recently caught up with Lefevre to discuss the Degree Completion Program, its advantages, and what it is meant to accomplish here on Marple campus.
Q: What exactly is the Delaware Valley Completion program and how does it work to the students’ advantage?
A: It’s going to help students get their bachelor’s degree on site at DCCC. So it’s more convenient. They don’t have to travel to a new university; they are already familiar with the campus and comfortable on the campus.
They can stay on site and it can help the student get their degree in a very affordable way. This program is all about the student; we do everything we can to make it more affordable and to be as transfer friendly as we can.
Our degree completion programs are designed to build upon the associate’s degrees from your school, such as business administration or the administration of justice. Three different associate’s degrees [transfer] into counseling psychology: psychology, sociology and social work.
They’re all mapped to our degrees and then there’s communication arts and journalism. So you’ve got six different associate degrees that map into one of “Throughout the process, I just always remember Mike being there” he says, “and I realized afterwards that I wanted to switch from being a firefighter to an EMT.”
From there, Hamilton obtained his certification through the EMT program at DCCC while he was still a junior in high school.
According to Hamilton, he was one of the youngest certified EMTs in the state at only 19 years old. Over the years, his roles within the profession were varied he served onboard Crozier transport helicopters as a paramedic and worked alongside several critical-care units.
Eventually, his passion turned to teaching. “My love was always sharing the knowledge,” says Hamilton. “In order to teach, you have to be active [being a paramedic].”
Since becoming an instructor at the college where he first learned his lifesaving skills, Hamilton says he sought to produce the best EMTs and paramedics he possibly could, taught by the most specialized staff within their respective fields.
Later in the evening, Hamilton makes his way to “do a little housekeeping” with a class of Allied Health paramedics on the fourth floor of DCCC’s Academic Building.
The environment is relaxed as the small crowd of students shuffle into the spacious, sterile facility. They exchange jokes and laughter over their most recent shifts, while Hmilton prepares to review questions from their last meeting session.
His tone is firm, yet upbeat as he impresses upon the students that only three weeks remain until the completion of their program. Several of the students watch intently as he makes his way around
the room, answering questions from their latest assignment and quizzing them at random.
As the class progresses, Hamilton dims the lights and brings up a simulation on the large projection screen at the back of the room. The students are then challenged to name the condition of a patient’s heart based solely on the electrocardiogram readings that slowly pan across the screen.
Nearly every student answers correctly, and Hamilton smiles at their combined efforts to complete the quiz within the allotted time. As he finishes the last portion of his lecture, he turns the lesson over to a second instructor, who begins to load a PowerPoint presentation on toxicology.
As Hamilton makes his way out of the training facility, he bids the students “good luck” and says he’ll be seeing them the following Thursday.
Although Hamilton teaches EMT training roughly six days of the week, he strives to work at least two 12-hour shifts as an on-call first responder.
His latest plans are to present a lecture on advanced cardiac life-support to third- year ER residents at Drexel University. Much of his pride, however, still lies in the current training program at DCCC, he says.
“I hope to grow the program with the people who are the best at what they do,” Hamilton adds. “To be able to take someone who barely knows how to turn on a heart monitor to being able to diagnose a heart condition at a glance it’s just amazing