November 1, 2023

Emergency Medical Services Accepting Applications for Citizens Academy

New EMS academy for citizens aims to better educate the Virginia Beach community and help save lives

Virginia Beach Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is accepting applications for its first-ever EMS Citizens Academy, giving Virginia Beach community members a chance to learn how to save a life.

“This is an exciting opportunity for Virginia Beach residents to gain first-hand knowledge of the VB Rescue system and learn how to help those in need,” said Chief of EMS Jason Stroud. “We’re excited to give members of our community an inside look into how we serve and provide them with real-world training.”

EMS Citizens Academy participants will receive CPR training and earn their certification, learn First Aid and Stop The Bleed, have an opportunity to ride on a VB Rescue ambulance as an observer, tour the Emergency Communications and Citizen Services dispatch center and more.

“We’re aiming to give members of our community a holistic look at one of the most unique and successful third-service EMS systems in the United States,” said Paramedic Derek Fuller, who is managing the program. “Not only will participants get to see behind the scenes, but they’ll receive practical training to help them save lives.”

The EMS Citizens Academy will begin on Jan. 10, 2024, and run every Wednesday night at The Bruce W. Edwards VBEMS Headquarters and Training Center from 6-9 p.m., culminating in a graduation ceremony on Feb. 21, 2024. Those interested can apply online. Applications are due by Nov. 30.

EMS is an award-winning third-service agency that answers more than 53,000 calls for service annually. EMS utilizes a combined career-volunteer workforce and was named a 2023 American Heart Association Mission: Lifeline Gold EMS Agency. To learn more about EMS, visit

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