Middlebury Regional EMS Staff photo including students Margo Reigle ’19, Margaret Weber ’18,
Marie Vasitas ’18, and David Cohen ’20
Middlebury First Responders (MFP) is a student organization for student first responders and students who are interested in emergency services. They aim to provide support, mentorship, and training to student first responders including EMTs and Firefighters. For more information on their work, visit go.middlebury.edu/mfr.
Below is an interview with Margaret Weber, co-president of Middlebury First Responders.
Why should folks join your org? What will they take away from the experience?
Middlebury First Responders is an opportunity to join a close-knit community, actively engage with Addison County, and help those who need it most in our community. MFR is a great place to start for anyone interested in supporting first responders or participating in first response while at Middlebury. We are not a responding agency but work closely with both Middlebury Regional EMS and Middlebury Fire Department to support their student programs. On campus, we provide resources, trainings, community events, and volunteer opportunities to students interested in first response!
Why did you first join Middlebury First Responders?
Marie Vasitas, Alex Browne, and I first started Middlebury First Responders last March to provide peer support to student EMTs and firefighters. Over 50 students are certified EMTs or Firefighters with many more than that certified in Wilderness Fire Response, Technical Rescue, Ski Patrol OEC, CPR or First Aid. The organization grew out of our mentor Ed Sullivan’s work after he passed away in the spring of 2016. Student first response was Ed’s vision that he brought to reality as an employee at the college and first responder in Addison County. Middlebury First Responders is a continuation of Ed’s works driven by student initiative with support from our community partners and related departments at the college.
What has been your most memorable experience as a member of Middlebury First Responders?
Last May, we hosted our first, of hopefully many, Annual Middlebury First Responders Banquet. Staff from Middlebury Regional EMS and Middlebury Fire Department joined students to thank our partners and celebrate a great year of growth!
What have you learned, either about yourself or the world around you, as a member of Middlebury First Responders?
Working in my community as an EMT, I see people on one of their worse days of their lives, a healthcare system that falls short for many of our community members, and the prevalence of drugs, abuse, and poverty. While many of our calls are routine, every once and a while one sticks with you. It is very easy to get weighed down by our work and overwhelmed by suffering. Middlebury First Responders has taught me the importance of community support to be able to process what we see as first responders and work together to engage with our community.
Where are you from and what’s your major? What other activities are you involved with on campus?
I am from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and am a Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Major with a Studio Arts Minor. On campus, I am also a Coordinator for Community Friends, a member of Chromatic, and a volunteer at the Open Door Clinic.
Front Row (Left to Right): Zoe Keskey (EMT, MC’18), Marie Vasitas (EMT, MC’18),
Margaret Weber (EMT, MC’18)
Back Row (Left to Right): Teena Betourney (Middlebury Regional EMS Director), Kate Ingwersen (Middlebury Regional EMS Training Director), David Shaw (Middlebury Fire Department Chief),
Dylan Montagu (EMT, Firefighter, MC ’20)