Questions Grouped by Categories

General Interest

Q: How is this degree different from EMT or EMT-paramedic certification?

A: Completion of an EMT or EMT-paramedic program provides you with the skills and knowledge to work within a specific clinical scope of practice. The EMC program is designed to significantly expand your overall clinical knowledge and build on your existing experience, skills, and competencies as an EMT, paramedic, respiratory therapist, or nurse. Our graduates are able to think through difficult clinical situations with a much larger knowledge base and bring additional professional competencies in leadership, management, communication, science, and teaching/learning to their jobs.

Q: How long does the program take to complete?

A: Students enter the Emergency Medical Care Program as juniors and complete the upper division core curriculum over two years. Like most bachelor's degree programs, the EMC program typically takes a total of four years to complete. Students may complete the two years of prerequisite and corequisite coursework at a community college or university of their choice, attending Loma Linda University for the last two years of their degree.

Q: Is the EMC Program a full-time program?

A: Yes, the EMC program is a full-time academic program. Students register for 12-14 units each term. Although we meet just once per week, we make a full-time program possible by meeting for a full eight to ten hours on class days.

Q: What days do students in the EMC program meet?

A: Students in the EMC program meet once a week. For juniors, that day is every Thursday. For seniors, we meet every Tuesday.

Q: Is the EMC program available online?

A: While there are select courses in the EMC program that are taught online, the majority of coursework requires attendance in-person one day a week.

Q: Will the EMC Program be offered online in the future?

A: The EMC Program is a clinically focused, professional program that requires a high level of interpersonal interaction, and our students are provided the best experience through in-class instruction and hands-on learning. While the EMC Program is designed as an in-person program, we are currently evaluating other EMS related programs that might be successfully delivered entirely online.

Application Process

Q: When is the earliest I can apply?

A: We begin accepting applications beginning October 1 for the following fall term admission. Acceptances will be offered on a rolling basis for a select number of highly qualified applicants.

Q: Do I need an SAT or ACT score to apply?

A: No, we do not require the SAT or ACT score to enter the EMC program. However, we do require your official high school transcript showing graduation or a GED equivalent. Applicants with an associate's degree are not required to submit high school transcripts.

Q: What is the minimum GPA for entering the EMC program?

A: We don't have a specific GPA requirement for applications to the EMC program because we evaluate each applicant individually—including the personal statement, references, work experience, professional potential, and the interview. That said, historically, our most competitive applicants have had a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Q: I read that I must complete an interview as part of the application process. When are interviews scheduled?

A: Interviews are scheduled once we have received all application materials, including your official transcripts, reference letters, and personal statement. Because we offer rolling admissions, interviews may be conducted at any time in the year after we have received all of your application materials.

Q: When is the application deadline?

A: The standard application deadline is July 1, however, offers of acceptance are always subject to available spaces in the class. Applications received by March 1 will receive preference in evaluation and admittance as early applications.

Q: How many students are accepted each year?

A: By design, we are a small program and seek to provide an individualized educational experience. We aim to admit 12 highly qualified students, with our enrollment limited to 15 students or less per year.

Program Entry Requirements

Q: Do I need an associate's degree before entering the program?

A: No, you do not need an associate's degree to enter the EMC Program. However, you must have the required prerequisite courses in order to be considered for acceptance into the program.

Q: Can I enroll in the program part time?

A: The EMC program is designed as a full-time program and students are only admitted on a full-time basis.

Q: Can I enter the program mid-year?

A: No, because many of our courses are sequential and build on previous coursework, all students enter as one class during fall term (late September).

Q: Can I complete program prerequisites or corequisites after I'm admitted to the program?

A: All program prerequisites courses should be complete at the time you start the EMC program (however, you may submit your application to the program while you are completing the prerequisite courses). Corequisite courses are general education courses that are required to graduate; it is best to complete as many of corequisite courses prior to starting the program, although some students elect to finish corequisite courses while enrolled in the EMC program.

Q: Can I take my prerequisites for the program at Loma Linda University?

A: Loma Linda University is a health sciences university. We offer certain prerequisites courses such as anatomy and physiology, microbiology, chemistry, and physics, but most prerequisites will need to be taken at a community college or other four-year college or university.

Financial Aid

Q: What does the EMC Program cost?

A: See our Estimated Costs Sheet.

Q: Is financial aid available for the EMC Program?

A: Financial aid is available for your education though grants and loans, depending on your individual financial profile. Students with demonstrable need may qualify for Pell Grants or Cal Grants. Subsidized and unsubsidized governmental loans or private loans are also available to help fund your education. Financial aid requires completion of the FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Please contact our financial aid office for more details or answers to specific questions.

Q: Are scholarships or awards available for the EMC Program?

A: Yes, a few scholarships are awarded to select students at the conclusion of the EMC program in recognition of their high academic achievement, professionalism, or outstanding service. The department, faculty, alumni, and an endowment from American Medical Response fund these various scholarships. 

Application and Transfer

Q: I'm attending a community or junior college. Is there a limit on the number of units I can transfer to Loma Linda University towards a bachelor's degree in emergency medical care?

A: You may transfer up to 70 semester units or 105 quarter units from a junior or community college towards the 192 quarter units required for a bachelor's degree in emergency medical care at Loma Linda University.

Q: I'm attending a four-year college or university. Is there a limit on the number of units I can transfer to Loma Linda University towards a bachelor's degree in emergency medical care?

A: There is no limit on the transfer units from four-year colleges and universities, but you must complete, at minimum, the EMC Program core curriculum at Loma Linda University.

Q: I'm interested in the EMC Program, but would like someone to evaluate my transcript and/or review my courses. How do I go about requesting a transcript evaluation or academic counseling session?

A: We would be more than happy to talk or meet with you to review your previous coursework and determine an academic plan that meets your goals. Appointments are offered throughout the year and may be scheduled by contacting the EMC Program director at (909) 558-8519 or

Attending the Program

Q: Can I work while taking classes in the program?

A: Yes, most students in the program work part time or full time in EMS while enrolled in the program. Because we believe work experience in EMS contributes to our students' overall career development, we have scheduled our program to meet only on one day of the week to accommodate working professionals.

Q: Do I need to live in the Loma Linda area to attend the EMC Program?

A: No, you do not need to live in the immediate Loma Linda area to attend the EMC Program; however, you will need to be able to commute to Loma Linda once a week. In addition to students who live in the San Bernardino or Riverside areas, many of our student successfully attend the program while living or working in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Palm Springs, and other desert and mountain communities.

Q: What clinical rotations or experience will I obtain while in the EMC program?

A: There are numerous options for clinical rotations while in the EMC program, but due to our one-day-a-week format, the majority of clinical rotations are embedded throughout the actual coursework. For example, our students complete two cardiology-specific rotations of their choice while taking the cardiology course. Additional clinical rotation options may be scheduled as part of the senior year coursework as your schedule and interest allows.

Q: Who are the instructors in the EMC Program?

A: Our program faculty are experienced clinicians and EMS providers; most have advanced degrees and have specific expertise in the area they teach. In addition to our full-time faculty, we have numerous adjunct faculty who work in a variety of executive and clinical positions.

Graduates and Degrees

Q: Will I receive my EMT-paramedic certification or be able to challenge the EMT-paramedic exam when I complete this degree?

A: No, our program is not designed as a paramedic program. If you are specifically interested in paramedic credentials, we highly recommend you complete a paramedic program prior to entering the EMC Program. We would be happy to refer you to the many paramedic programs available.

Q: What career opportunities exist once I complete the EMC degree?

A: Many of our graduates continue to work in EMS in a clinical capacity; however, quite a number move quickly into advanced positions as trainers, managers, or supervisors. Approximately half of our graduates have continued their education at the graduate level or have continued on to become physician assistants or physicians.

Q: I'm planning to go to medical school. Can the EMC Program work as a "premed" program?

A: Yes, the EMC Program can make an excellent program for applying to medical school when combined with medical school science prerequisites. Because there is no such thing as a "premed" major, any four-year degree combined with the medical school prerequisites will meet the application requirements for medical school. However, medical school admissions committees often look upon EMTs and paramedics favorably, and we believe the EMC program further distinguishes an applicant from other common degrees in the arts and sciences.

Q: What are the medical school science prerequisites?

A: Not all medical schools have the same prerequisite requirements, but the majority of schools require at a minimum the following sciences: one year biology, one year general chemistry, one year organic chemistry, one year of physics, and an upper division biochemistry course. Please check with the medical schools you are interested in attending for specific admission requirements, such as additional biology courses, calculus, foreign language courses, etc.

Q: I'm planning to go to physician assistant school. Can the EMC Program work as a pre-physician assistant program?

A: Yes, the EMC Program works very well for individuals interested in becoming physician assistants. The prerequisites to the EMC program are very close to the prerequisites for many physician assistant programs. The EMC Program curriculum provides valuable clinical knowledge in preparation for a physician assistant program, and our unique, one-day-a-week class format allows students to continue work as a patient care provider while completing their degrees.

Q: How many students who start the EMC Program complete their degree?

A: We do our best to screen applicants to ensure the EMC Program matches their academic and professional goals as well as their academic fitness, so our attrition rate from the program is usually very low. On occasion, students drop from the program to pursue other professional or academic endeavors, for personal reasons, and on rare occasion, for academic reasons.

Emergency Medical Care Program
Nichol Hall, 1926
Loma Linda University
Loma Linda, CA 92350

Phone: 909-558-7076
Fax: 909-558-4701