■ Hemet Unified School District
Tahquitz High School (THS) began offering Emergency Medical Response (EMR) classes at the beginning of this school year. The school currently offers the EMR as part of a Career Technical Education (CTE) pathway, which gives students the ability to gain more hands-on experience through classroom and internship opportunities. While students may have enrolled in the class to be able to enter into a career that would allow them to help others in the future, two of the students used the information they learned to save the lives of two children, so that they could continue to have a future.
Samantha Gudiel Veliz is a senior at THS. She was able to use what she learned in her EMR class to stabilize her nephew. A few weeks ago, Samantha was with her nephew and brother-in-law, when she realized her nephew was closing his eyes and seemed to be fainting. The three-year-old had been sick with a high fever. Samantha quickly took control of the situation. “Everything I learned in class came to my mind,” said Samantha. She called 911, began checking his vitals and monitoring his breathing. She made sure she kept her nephew awake and alert throughout the process. The paramedics came and they were able to take her nephew to the hospital to treat him.
Adam Chacon, also a senior at THS, encountered a similar situation. He and his nephew were at home one day when his nephew began coughing. His one-year-old nephew had just taken a big bite of food that had been lodged in his airway. Adam remembered from class that coughing is good, because that means only part of the airway is blocked so he encouraged his nephew to continue coughing. He noticed that his nephew’s lips had turned blue so he turned his nephew over to do baby compressions. Thanks to this, the food dislodged and Adam was able to swipe it out of his mouth. He continued to encourage his nephew to cough to ensure everything was out.
“I’m glad I took EMR,” said Adam, “I wouldn’t have learned what I needed to to save my nephew.”
Samantha plans on attending college next year to pursue a career in nursing. She said that nursing would allow her to help people and she sees it as a very rewarding career. Adam enlisted in the Army and will leave in July; he plans to continue his education and become a nurse as well.
We are so proud of Samantha and Adam for being able to recall and put into practice what they learned in class to save a family member’s life! We wish you the best of luck as you both continue your education and work towards your goals of becoming a nurse!