A Word from the Executive Director

TEMS is going strong for our 30th year! It has been a great year so far with a rebrand, an updated uniform, expansion of our training opportunities, as well as preparations for our 30th Anniversary Celebration.

In celebration of 30 years of service, TEMS has been hard at work to create a brand new patch! To go along with these new patches, TEMS has had a uniform redesign, switching from khakis to tactical pants. We also have brand new jackets to sharpen our uniforms and provide warmth and visibility on scene.

Both our national and statewide visibility have also improved. TEMS was an active member in the annual National Collegiate Emergency Medical Services Foundation (NCEMSF) conference, giving a talk on Boston Marathon operations. In addition, we’ve maintained our local presence by attending regional training at Pro EMS. When we haven’t been involved in continuing education outside of Tufts, we have had many great trainings here on campus, including one by former TEMS member Jon Epstein, who came in to teach us about protocol development as well as principles of International Trauma Life Support (ITLS). Last but not least, our training program has grown to include a full Emergency Vehicle Operator Course (EVOC), with two of our own certified instructors.

We have been hard at work with Alumni Relations to put together a luncheon to celebrate 30 years of service to the Tufts community.
Please join us on Sunday, April 24. Register online if you plan to attend, or share a memory online if you can’t join us. As TEMS has been preparing old photos, videos and news clippings, it’s been humbling to be reminded of our roots, as well as to see how far we have come.

As always, we welcome you to stay involved with your TEMS family. Email us at if you want to get updated on TEMS, talk lights and sirens, or share some TEMS stories. Also, check out our Facebook page, join the LinkedIn group to keep up with former crew members, and as always, keep your finger on The Pulse.

   Keep in Touch,
   Hank Weinstock
   Tufts EMS
   Executive Director

What has TEMS been up to?

This year, TEMS has been busier than ever as the agency celebrates 30 exciting years of service to the Tufts community. In the Fall 2015 and Spring 2016 semesters, TEMS welcomed seventeen new EMT’s to the squad, increasing total membership to 42. With expanding our protocols and adding exciting training opportunities, TEMS has had another great year!

TEMS continues to take advantage of every opportunity it can to get involved in the greater Medford and Somerville communities. TEMS members were present at Kids Day and Community Day, giving local children the opportunity to explore medical equipment and learn about emergency care. We also helped local Girl Scout troops earn their first aid patches, teaching them about the importance of calling 911 and basic first aid, such as splinting and wound care.

TEMS has also been extremely involved on campus with CPR outreach and training. Tufts is officially recognized by the National Collegiate Emergency Medical Services Foundation (NCEMSF) as a HEARTSafe campus, showing its dedication to the important cause of bystander CPR training. To celebrate National Collegiate EMS Week and to promote healthy hearts this Valentine’s Day, members were stationed in the Campus Center to teach students hands-only CPR. TEMS has also administered numerous CPR certification courses to interested student groups, including Tufts Mountain Club, employees of The Rez Café, and the brothers of Theta Chi and Delta Tau Delta.

This Marathon Monday, you can find TEMS volunteering at various Medical Stations along the route, providing quality medical care to the runners, including treatment for hyperthermia, blisters, overexertion, and hyponatremia. TEMS will work alongside athletic trainers, physicians, and other medical providers to ensure a medically safe race day for everyone.

Keep a lookout for TEMS in the community and stay tuned for more updates on upcoming events!

Crisis at the Cannon

‘Twas a dark and windy November night. TEMS stood gathered round the cannon, the smell of fresh paint in the air, our fingertips coated in a mixture of red, white, and blue… someone forgot to buy black.  The cannon stood proudly in the TEMS colors, brilliantly showing off the mini TEMS truck riding the barrel.

But wait, what was that? Rustling of a nearby bush. The sound of little metal balls rolling around in full cans of spray paint. Dark figures hurrying down the Pres Lawn and out of sight: Competition.

We had but one choice: to stand guard in front of our masterpiece, and defend it until sunrise. But braving the cold, icy wind to defend what was ours was no easy feat. We took turns sitting in the truck to stay warm, and wrapped ourselves in foil blankets when sitting outside was the only option. We buckled down and settled in for the long night ahead, pulling out homework and study materials (we are Tufts students after all, and it was a Tuesday).

And then they came. In numbers greater than our own, they arrived to overtake our position. But we stood fast, and called in reinforcements that had been studying in Eaton.

As Rosie, Greg, and Haylee arrived, the leader of the enemy bunch approached, seeking to strike a deal with TEMS for equal use of the cannon that night. Five harrowing minutes later, an agreement was reached! In the presence of TEMS, the rival party would be allowed to paint a small portion of the cannon as they wished, so long as they promised not to return to finish the rest.

In the end, the power of diplomacy was mightier than the sword, or rather the backboard Fred was wielding. With a final handshake, the battle was finished, and everyone was safe at home by 0100 hours. TEMS cleared scene without incident.

Meet the Executive Board

Left to right: Dan Strauss (Technical Director), Rosie Quinn (Director of Operations), Justin Zaslavsky (Community Relations), Isaac Lasko (Director of Education), Hank Weinstock (Executive Director), Nikki Margaretos (Director of Finance), Fred Lu (Director of Training/QA), Andrew Pettit (Community Relations).

Senior Send-off

As our 13 seniors graduate this year, they reflect on their time with TEMS and its effect on their college experience. We're going to miss them next year, but wish them the best of luck in their post-graduation endeavors!
Top row, left to right: Matt Moser, Greg Zhang, Noa Yee, Montane Silverman, Manny Caballero Ortega, Danny Feld, and Shiv Saxena. Bottom row: Haylee Rosenblatt, Shivani Bigler, and Shay Reilly.

Not Pictured: Lex Erath, Alayna Feng, and John Ramatowski.

Shivani Bigler: "Being involved with TEMS has 100% spiced up my college experience. It's truly amazing how much you can learn from your own peers, and there's nothing more rewarding than passing on advice to incoming ambitious EMTs and watching them grow. Without a doubt, it's the people that make this organization not only feel like an outlet for experience and education, but also feel like a family."

Manny Caballero Ortega: "TEMS has played a very important role in my life as it has helped me grow both professionally and personally. I am sad to leave, however, I am excited to see all the new ideas and experiences new members will bring to the organization. TEMS and all the people involved with the organization will always have a special place in my heart!"

Lex Erath: "When I signed up for PE 131 spring of my freshmen year, I never thought TEMS would grow to be such a huge part of my life at Tufts; as a senior about to graduate, I couldn't imagine my college experience without it. From the endless (really, endless) board meetings and the many last-minute IMC crashes, to the copious amounts of festive Spring Fling puke and gloriously inaccurate Mentee Night calls, I wouldn't change a single thing. @Seniors I'm far too skilled at social media stalking for you to ever be rid of me, so don't think this is goodbye; @underclassmen enjoy every single call- even the 1 AM finger lac -because it'll be over before you know it."

Alayna Feng:"In addition to working with patients, I have loved becoming part of the community of nerds that is TEMS.  Although I'll miss this fun group, I am excited to join the M1 class at Emory University Medical School in my hometown of Atlanta this fall."

John Ramatowki: "TEMS has been a defining part of my college experience. The commitment of our members to grow and develop our organization has been nothing short of astounding. The people I have met and the work that we do fulfill a role no other campus organization can provide. To my fellow seniors - thank you for an amazing three years. I wish you health and happiness in your future careers. To our membership - you are appreciated in more ways than you realize. Here’s to an amazing college adventure!"

Haylee Rosenblatt: "TEMS has been without a doubt the defining feature of my college experience. The lessons I’ve learned on and off scene from my teammates (both older and younger) will stay with me throughout my life and career and help to shape the kind of doctor and person I hope to become. I couldn’t be more grateful."

Shiv Saxena: "I joined TEMS because I was tired of lifting inanimate objects during normal hours; now I lift human beings and carry them down staircases at 4 am. Best three years of my life."

Montane Silverman: "TEMS has undoubtedly been the most rewarding thing I have done at Tufts. From winning awards at NCEMSF, Delta Team crushing Spring Fling, finger lacs, being vomited on by countless EtOH patients, waking up to the tone, to just cruising around in the truck, TEMS will always hold a special place in my heart. But, these experiences would be nothing without all of those who dedicate their time to making this organization so great. Thank you for the memories."

Greg Zhang: "I will always remember my time with TEMS, but more importantly I will always remember the people I spent it with. From the EMT class, to first shifts and last shifts, from ordering take-out while filling out reports after Spring Fling to working the medical tents along the marathon route, my time on TEMS has proved to me that it's not the destination that matters, but rather the journey and the people who accompany you on that journey. To the underclassmen: stay in touch, we look forward to hearing great things from you all. To the seniors: it's been quite a ride, and may the adventure continue wherever you end up."

TEMS Celebrates 30 Years of Service!
This April, Tufts Emergency Medical Services celebrates 30 years of service to the Tufts community. That being no easy feat, we decided to revisit the 30+ year journey the squad has taken to get this point, and to celebrate the history of TEMS.

History of TEMS

TEMS began in the fall of 1984, when founder David Levitt recognized the need for more immediate emergency medical responses on the Medford campus. Along with fellow EMT Craig Vinch, he recruited a few more students to the cause and soon had TEMS recognized by TCU Senate as an official student organization in 1985. TEMS officially went into service and began responding to calls at 7PM on April 6th, 1986. In its first week of service, TEMS responded to seven calls on campus.

At its start, TEMS only had four members, together managing to cover every night shift during the week and 24 hour shifts every weekend. They worked out of a small office in what we now know as the Women’s Center. Due to their lack of a vehicle, TEMS members either left their supplies in TUPD cruisers, or carried the bags themselves, walking (or running) to every call they received.

After two years of walking to calls, TEMS got its first vehicle, a “new” 1987 MiniRam van. With a real emergency response vehicle, TEMS stopped walking to scenes and starting driving, with lights and sirens no less. A few years later, as the TEMS truck began to grow old, it soon needed to be replaced. In the fall of 1991, TEMS bought the first truck to follow the infamous MiniRam, a 1992 Ford Explorer. The first in a long line of TEMS Explorers, the new truck allowed TEMS to accommodate their ever increasing call volume. Many model years later, in September, 2008 the TEMS truck officially became a licensed class V ambulance in Massachusetts. In 2010, TEMS introduced the newest Ford Explorer to the family, which is still in use today.

When TEMS started out, the notion of collegiate EMS was still very new. As such, TEMS’ partners in emergency response were skeptical at first. A bunch of college students running around with stethoscopes and playing doctor naturally aroused some skepticism. TEMS was quick to prove themselves though.  In the fall of 1986, TEMS convinced the administration at Tufts to create an EMT course, now offered for credit as PE-131. As students began taking the class, so did Tufts police officers, and soon enough TUPD was learning emergency medical skills from the TEMS members who were TAing the class. With the new partnership came new respect for TEMS amongst the Tufts police, and a 30-year friendship was born.  

On September 24, 1988 TEMS responded to a fall from the 1st floor balcony of Miller Hall. The critical nature of the call combined with TEMS’ laudable response helped increase the credibility of the squad on campus, and revealed the need for 24/7 coverage on the Tufts campus. The following spring TEMS began to offer 24/7 service, and continues to do so today.

In the spring of 1998 TEMS began carrying an AED. At the time, AED use was not part of a basic EMT’s scope of practice, and having one put TEMS at the forefront of what a BLS service could do.

Perhaps most importantly to any recent TEMS member, in 2003 TEMS obtained two JumboCash meal cards, for use by the tech 1 and 2 of each shift on and around campus. Now loaded with 8 wonderful dollars per shift, the meal cards help keep our blood glucose high while on duty!

TEMS has come a long way since it was founded in 1986. No longer a club funded by TCU Senate, TEMS now has the privilege of being a part of the public safety department at Tufts. Under the direction of Geoffrey Bartlett, a former TEMS member himself, it has all the support it needs to continue to thrive on campus. From the 42 EMTs who now make up its ranks, to the founding students who came up with its name, TEMS members have kept the squad thriving at the forefront of emergency medicine for the last 30 years. Here’s to 100 more.

The TEMS squad and their truck, circa 1997with our advisor, Geoff Bartlett, second from the right!
In 30 years, TEMS

has responded

to over 9,300 calls!

The Evolution of the TEMS Truck

The Infamous MiniRam Van:
The very first of the TEMS trucks, this used 1987 Dodge MiniRam Van was in service from 1987 until 1991.  Purchased because TEMS members got in an accident while test driving it, the MiniRam was never truly meant to be an emergency vehicle.  The massive rotating light bar affixed to its roof drew more power than its electrical system was designed to produce, and the truck was known to stall if it ever came to a full stop with the lights and sirens running.  Despite its less than ideal performance, it was well loved by its crew, and served TEMS admirably in the early years of the squad.
Our First Explorer:
The 1992 Ford Explorer was the second truck purchased by TEMS, and the first in a long line of TEMS Explorers that continue to serve TEMS today.  After the electrical woes experienced in the first truck, TEMS switched to a more power conservative strobe lighting system, which remained the standard until 2010.
Some more Explorers through the years:
Our Current Truck:
This 2010 Ford Explorer is the latest in the line of TEMS emergency vehicles.  Officially a class V ambulance in the state of Massachusetts, it keeps TEMS looking good with its sleek new LED lighting, and it is still in service today.
The TEMS Patch Through the Years
Our newest patch (bottom right), designed by Fred Lu, went into service this semester with the arrival of TEMS’ new jackets, shown below!
A Word from the President
Tufts University President, Anthony Monaco:
"I am grateful to all the current and past students who have contributed to TEMS' 30 years of outstanding service to the Tufts community.  TEMS makes a tremendous contribution to the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff, while offering the students who participate unique opportunities to gain valuable skills and life lessons.  I wish TEMS many more years of success."
Listen to a special dispatch from TUPD on April 6, 2016, commemorating TEMS' 30 years of service.
This is Tufts EMS, WNRC497, standing by.