Hawk Ventures supports a wide range of wilderness EMS (WEMS) programs, including the flagship Carolina Wilderness EMS Externship program. Each program is personally run by Dr. Seth Collings Hawkins. Hawkins is one of only a few physicians in the United States to be double-boarded in both emergency medicine and EMS, and is the first physician ever named a Master Fellow of the Academy of Wilderness Medicine. Click on the program listings below for more details on each of our classes.

Carolina Wilderness EMS Externship

The Carolina Wilderness EMS Externship is dedicated to training the future physician leaders of Wilderness EMS. It represents a unique collaboration between Hawk Ventures and a community EMS system (Burke County Emergency Services), a community hospital system (Carolinas HealthCare System Blue Ridge), a community college (Western Piedmont Community College), and an international research university (Wake Forest University‘Department of Emergency Medicine). Two Externs are selected each year to train with professional Wilderness EMS providers in Burke County, North Carolina. The Externship differs from most wilderness medicine electives in that the emphasis is almost entirely on EMS activities, rather than general wilderness medicine. As such, the focus of the Extern is spent on learning the systematic response to and management of wilderness emergencies, rather than general environmental medicine and individual patient care. Particular attention is paid to hands-on and field training. Every effort is made for Externs to be learning their skills from actual field providers and in the field, rather than in a classroom from lecturers. This philosophy is exemplified by our motto esse quam videri, or “to be rather than to seem.” Externs each year are chosen from a pool of medical student and resident physician applicants.

Carolina Wilderness EMS Summit

The Carolina Wilderness EMS Summit is a Western Piedmont Community College (WPCC)-supported EMS Continuing Medical Education (CME) conference attracting EMS personnel from throughout the southeast.  During the 2-day experience EMS students will learn critical Wilderness EMS (WEMS) and extended medical care skills.  The Carolina WEMS Externs serve as faculty, sharing skills they have learned during their Extern month. The primary target audience for the Externship are ALS EMS providers who need WEMS skills for their field medical care, with particular emphasis on paramedics and EMS Fellow physicians.

Carolina Wilderness EMS Seminar

The Carolina Wilderness EMS Seminar was launched in 2014 to strong reviews, when it was delivered to every EMS Fellow in North Carolina save one. This innovative 8-hour course targets an audience of EMS Fellows and has three primary learning objectives:
1. Preparation for WEMS portion of American Board of Emergency Medicine EMS board certification examination
2. Completion of WEMS portion of ACGME EMS Fellowship requirements
3. Acquisition of WEMS knowledge and skills using the Carolina Wilderness EMS Externship esse quam videre philosophy
This is the only wilderness medicine board preparation course of which we are aware specifically directed at EMS Fellows. In addition, the curriculum and format is appropriate for any healthcare provider interested in didactic (lecture-based) WEMS training or EM/EMS board preparation. The course is also intended to offer some of Hawk Ventures’ Externship training opportunities to a wider physician audience. In prior years, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine has designated the Seminar for a maximum of 8.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. All 8  hours of the Seminar are, by design, didactic and classroom-based. The Seminar is intended to dovetail with the Carolina Wilderness EMS Summit, an 18-hour course which is entirely hands-on and field-based in Pisgah National Forest. The two are always offered in a single weekend, the final weekend of the Carolina Wilderness EMS Externship each year. Seminar students are encouraged to register simultaneously for the Summit, to get a more robust experience and for more extensive hands-on training in wilderness EMS.

Wilderness EMS Concept Vehicle Project

In 2008, Dr. Hawkins published the results of a two-year-long study on a trial hybrid gasoline-electrical EMS response vehicle in the Journal of EMS. This study exploded a number of myths about the supposed inability of hybrid vehicles to perform in an EMS operational environment.
Hawk Ventures is at the drawing board again! We’re currently building a cutting-edge concept vehicle for Wilderness EMS operations. Our plan is to have a vehicle road-ready and equipped by the end of 2018. The Hawk Ventures WEMS Vehicle Team currently includes Seth Collings Hawkins, James RobinsonJason Seidel and Jim Hawkins. Standby for some truly cool and game-changing EMS vehicular concepts for remote medical care!