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About Us

Our History

CWRU EMS was first envisioned by Ari Rabkin and Joseph Grover during the 2003-2004 school year. Ari, at the time a sophomore, and Joseph, a freshman, had both been affiliated with volunteer fire departments in Montgomery County, Maryland. When they both came to Case, they were disappointed that a school of such renown did not have its own EMS squad like many other colleges and universities.

Determined to found an EMS squad on campus, Ari and Joseph met with Brian Hurd, assistant director of CWRU Protective Services, who was very supportive of the idea. Emboldened by their success, during Spring 2004 Ari and Joseph met with Glenn Nicholls, Vice President of Student Affairs, who was also supportive. VP Nicholls gave Ari and Joseph some contacts at the nursing school, among them Dr. John Clochesy and Chris Mannacci.


After meeting with Dr. John Clochesy from the nursing school, Joseph and Ari found themselves availed with an advisor and teacher for CWRU EMS's EMT class. Ari and Joseph then met with Colleen Barker-Williamson, Director of Student Activities. Colleen helped them to arrange with meetings with Risk Management and the Office of General Counsel to address liability concerns.

Throughout Spring 2004 and Summer 2004, Ari and Joseph met several times each with Brian Hurd, Colleen Barker-Williamson, Glenn Nicholls, and Dr. Clochesy. During Summer 2004 they received word that Risk Management had approved their endeavor.

Fall 2004 brought with it a number of successes in their efforts to create CWRU EMS. In Fall 2004 and continuing into Spring 2005, CWRU EMS held its first EMT class, team-taught by staff from the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing. On October 26, 2004, USG approved a resolution affirming its support for CWRU EMS. At the end of Fall 2004, USG approved CWRU EMS as a student group and provided funding for the Spring of 2005. Throughout Fall 2004 CWRU EMS worked towards developing a close working relationship with Cleveland EMS and Case Protective Services, as well as tried to find a physician to serve as CWRU EMS. medical director.

Starting in Spring 2005, Joseph and Ari continued paving the way for CWRU EMS to become a reality. By early February, CWRU EMS was finally granted the Presidential Initiative Grant to begin purchasing medical equipment. In addition, CWRU EMS received permission to use the second floor of the Satellite Security Office as their own office, while sharing some of the space with Protective Services officers. Furniture was provided by the Office of Housing and Residence Life, which included beds, a desk, chairs, as well as filing cabinets. Finally, CWRU EMS was given a patch design by Case Creative Services. With the finances and now the design, purchasing of medical equipment, uniforms, and other necessary supplies could begin.

The last piece came together when Joseph and Ari were approached by Dr. Jeffrey Lubin to serve as the Medical Director for CWRU EMS. At the end of Spring 2005, CWRU EMS had finally become a reality and was able to begin providing its services on campus. On April 22nd, 2005, CWRU EMS received its final all-encompassing approval by the Office of Student Affairs and the Office of the President and Provost to act as a Case sponsored EMS organization. On April 23rd, 2005, CWRU EMS provided medical standby for its first event, Springfest 2005.

Beginning at 7:00PM Friday, September 30th, 2005, CWRU EMS began its first weekend responding to medical emergencies on the Northside of campus. CWRU EMS was on duty from 7:00PM Friday until 7:00AM Monday, ready to respond to all medical emergencies dispatched by Protective Services.

In September 2007, CWRU EMS had their first shift with the aid of a vehicle. Having a vehicle meant that CWRU EMS could finally serve the entire Case campus.

In 2008, CWRU EMS begin a working relationship with Cleveland Heights Fire Department. CHFD offers ride-time to case students interested in shadowing emergency 911 response. Furthermore, CHFD partcipates in the CWRU EMS mass casulaity incident drill.

In fall 2009 CWRU EMS begin operating out of Cutler House, tripling their office space, living quarters, and storage space. CWRU EMS held it's first Fall EMT class in 2010.

CWRU EMS currently provides services to the Case Western Reserve University every day, operating 9 shifts during the fall and spring semesters.

8:00pm to 8:00amSunday-Thursday
24 hourFriday and Saturday

CWRU Emergency Medical Services

CWRU EMS, a volunteer organization offering professional level care.