Skip to Main Content

Avera McKennan School of EMS

Physical Location:
3936 S Western Ave
Mailing Address:
1325 S Cliff Avenue
Sioux Falls, SD 57117-5045

Graduates Offer Their Feedback

Graduates of the Avera McKennan School of EMS have shared their thoughts on the program and how it prepared them to be professional paramedics.


Nathan Hopper, paramedic class of 2007

"Less than two months after finishing paramedic school, I was offered a full-time job at MAST in Kansas City, MO. It is a high volume, high performance EMS system with tight expectations for patient care. My education at Avera was fantastic. I was able to jump into a rather challenging work environment because I had the necessary training and skills to do the job well. Many of my coworkers are Avera McKennan paramedic school graduates. People here always ask, "You're from South Dakota? I suppose you went to Avera McKennan then. There's a ton of you guys down here." The program has a good reputation and EMS agencies recognize that."


Colleen Desmond, paramedic class of 2006

paramedic graduate

"I LOVE THIS JOB! I see numerous students throughout the week and none of them, in my opinion, are prepared as well as the students from the Avera McKennan School of EMS. I was definately nervous the first couple weeks on the job but when it comes down to it, I know how to provide quality patient care."


Pam Staricha, paramedic class of 2002

paramedic graduate

"What sets apart the Avera McKennan School of EMS is the personal level of instruction. The instructors find a way to meet each individual student's needs, and continue that relationship long after graduation. Having the Avera McKennan education as a foundation for my career in EMS gives me great pride."


Sarah Furbeck, paramedic class of 2005

"I am currently working as a full time paramedic in addition to being a preceptor/mentor for students from various colleges that come to do their internship; this experience alone has made me see just how extensive my education at the Avera McKennan School of EMS was. My Lieutenant and various other experienced paramedics and firefighters have complimented me on my knowledge and skill level."


Ken Brown, paramedic class of 2005

"The education that I received from the Avera McKennan School of EMS prepared me to enter my career as a paramedic with confidence.  Each and every patient will benefit from the foundation it has given me to care for others.  The excellent reputation of the school is widely known by the employers with whom I interviewed."


Dan DeSmet, Operations Manager, North Memorial Ambulance

Marshall Region, paramedic class of 1997

"Avera McKennan's paramedic program is one of the best in the region. They successfully coordinate the clinical portion of the class with the didactic portion, and produce well-rounded paramedics."