Emergency Medical Services

Does the idea of helping people in life-threatening situations appeal to you? Do you thrive in a high-stakes, high-emotion environment? Then you may be a good fit for a career in the field of Emergency Medical Services (EMS). EMS certification will qualify you to work for an ambulance service or in an emergency department of a hospital or clinic. Lifeguards, ski patrol and firefighters also frequently require EMS certification. OCC Career Advantage offers an EMS certificate program that prepares you to take the national EMS certification exam for EMT Basic certification in any California county. If you see yourself as a member of a life-saving team, read on to learn more about our program.

A sampling of courses for these careers

Emergency Medical Services
Emergency Medical Services Clinical Internship
Medical Terminology

Interpersonal Communication
Emergency Medical Services Lab

Did you know?

Employment of emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics is projected to grow 15 percent from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Program Details

Complete our certificate of specialization program, and you’ll be well-prepared to enter a career in emergency medical services.

See Evening, Weekend and Online Courses

In less than 2 years
you can earn:
Certificate of Achievement

Build on your certificate
of achievement with a:
Certificate of Specialization

Prepare for a career as an emergency medical technician (EMT) with a public or private ambulance service, as a firefighter, in an emergency department, or as a lifeguard or ski patrol. Completing this program will qualify you to sit for the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technician’s certifying exam and to obtain EMS basic certification in any California county. View program detail in course catalog.

Or earn your
associate degree
in under 4 years


To enroll in a Career Advantage program, you must first apply for admission to Orange Coast College. To apply, go to the Admissions Application Information webpage and review the information and requirements for admission. A link at the bottom of that page will take you to the CCCApply website, where you will be prompted to create an account so you can begin the application process.

Classes cost $46 per unit for residents of California. Classes vary in their unit value, but an average 3-unit class costs $138. There are additional fees required to register and additional costs associated with each program. Click here to view the estimated total costs of the program in this career cluster.

View this chart for the length of the core program.

This program offers evening courses. For details about offerings in this program, speak to a counselor or consult the class schedule. The class schedule tool searches through all Orange Coast College course offerings and includes a filter for online classes.

You can make an appointment in person, online or by phone.  Click here for more information about Counseling Services and how to make an appointment.

For general questions about enrollment, availability of classes and other services for prospective and current OCC students, call The Answer Center at 714-432-5772. For answers to specific questions you can speak to a counselor or to the faculty member listed on this program page.

Other Programs That Might Interest You

Male patient sleeps with sleep apnea mask

Earn an associate degree to begin a career in respiratory care

Medical assistant with stethoscope and vitals chart smiles at camera

Complete our certificate program to launch a career in medical assisting

A male lifeguard holding a flotation device on a beach looks out into the water

Train to become a lifeguard through this noncredit certificate program

Did you know?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, people who have a certificate as
their highest level of education earned, on average, 20 percent more than
those whose highest education level is a high school diploma.

Our Team

Christina Anchondo, 

CTE Outreach Specialist

Katie Ottoson

Katie Ottoson, M.S.

Counselor, CTE and
Career Services

Caryn Plum

Caryn Plum

Counselor, Allied
Health Careers

Find Out

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Fill out the form below and one of our team members will contact you with more information