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Career and Education Opportunities for Paramedics in Birmingham, Alabama

Paramedics can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Birmingham, Alabama area. There are currently 400 working paramedics in Alabama; this should grow by 29% to about 520 working paramedics in the state by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for paramedics are expected to grow by about 10.3%. Paramedics generally drive ambulance or assist ambulance driver in transporting sick, injured, or convalescent persons.

Income for paramedics is about $8 per hour or $18,340 per year on average in Alabama. Nationally, their income is about $10 hourly or $22,410 annually. Incomes for paramedics are not quite as good as in the overall category of Public Service in Alabama, and not quite as good as the overall Public Service category nationally.

There are fifteen schools of higher education in the Birmingham area, including three within twenty-five miles of Birmingham where you can get a degree to start your career as a paramedic. Given that the most common education level for paramedics is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a paramedic if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Paramedic

Paramedic video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, paramedics drive ambulance or assist ambulance driver in transporting sick, injured, or convalescent persons. They also assist in lifting patients.

Paramedics drive ambulances or assist ambulance drivers in transporting sick or convalescent persons. They also remove and replace soiled linens and apparatus to maintain sanitary conditions. Equally important, paramedics have to place patients on stretchers and load stretchers into ambulances, usually with assistance from other attendants. They are often called upon to earn and maintain appropriate certifications. They are expected to remove supplies and disposable items on ambulances. Finally, paramedics accompany and assist emergency medical technicians on calls.

Every day, paramedics are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they evaluate problems as they arise.

It is important for paramedics to administer first aid, such as bandaging and administering oxygen. They are often called upon to report facts concerning accidents or emergencies to hospital personnel or law enforcement officials. They also restrain or shackle violent patients. Somewhat less frequently, paramedics are also expected to restrain or shackle violent patients.

And finally, they sometimes have to drive ambulances or assist ambulance drivers in transporting sick or convalescent persons.

Like many other jobs, paramedics must be reliable and have a strong concern for others.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Birmingham include:

  • Bus Driver. Drive bus or motor coach, including regular route operations, charters, and private carriage. May assist passengers with baggage. May collect fares or tickets.
  • School Bus Driver. Transport students or special clients.
  • Taxi Driver. Drive automobiles, vans, or limousines to transport passengers. May occasionally carry cargo.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Paramedic Training

Jefferson State Community College - Birmingham, AL

Jefferson State Community College, 2601 Carson Rd, Birmingham, AL 35215-3098. Jefferson State Community College is a medium sized college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 8,718 students. Jefferson State Community College has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Emergency Medical Technology/Technician which graduated zero, nine, and nine students respectively in 2008.

Bevill State Community College - Sumiton, AL

Bevill State Community College, 101 State St, Sumiton, AL 35148. Bevill State Community College is a small college located in Sumiton, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,860 students. Bevill State Community College has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Emergency Medical Technology/Technician which graduated fifteen, two, and six students respectively in 2008.

Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus - Birmingham, AL

Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus, 3060 Wilson Rd SW, Birmingham, AL 35221-1717. Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus is a small college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,507 students. Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus has a less than one year program in Emergency Medical Technology/Technician which graduated three students in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama photo by Eric_in_SF

Birmingham is located in Jefferson County, Alabama. It has a population of over 228,798, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Birmingham, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Birmingham cost $187,300 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, one hundred thirty-two new homes were built in Birmingham, down from two hundred thirty-two the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Birmingham are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 24 minutes. More than 18.5% of Birmingham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Birmingham is 12.5%, which is greater than Alabama's average of 10.7%.

The percentage of Birmingham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Williams Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Westminister Presbyterian Church and West End Methodist Church are all churches located in Birmingham. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Birmingham is home to the Mineral Park Municipal Golf Course and the Cooper Green Golf Course as well as Avondale Mills Park and Smithfield Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Acipco Shopping Center, Altadena Square Shopping Center and Parkway East Huffman Shopping Center. Visitors to Birmingham can choose from Marriott Hotel Birmingham, Rime Garden Extended Stay Suites and Studioplus for temporary stays in the area.