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North Kent College Students showcase skills during emergency rescue exercise

Miskin Make-up students worked with Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) to help re-create realistic looking situations for crews during road traffic collision (RTC) training.

Different blue light services were brought together at Tonbridge Fire Station, as part of their emergency response training arranged by Firefighter Jeff Horton. The students were invited down to showcase their skills at theatrical make-up, helping to achieve a level of realism for the various teams, with injuries such as cuts, grazes, bruises and bone breaks on the ‘casualties’ being used in the RTC scenarios.

On arrival, they were then also given the chance to be further involved, by playing out the roles of the victims in the portrayed accidents. Not only did this mean that the emergency crews were given a more lifelike version of events, but our students got to see the after-effects of dangerous driving and unfortunate accidents. Many spoke afterwards of what they had learnt from the day and would be a lot more careful when out on the roads in the future.

Alex Gent, Level 3 Theatrical Make up student, remarked “The day was a fascinating challenge- after all who knows injuries better than the emergency services? Working under time pressure and with such an exacting audience was a great test of our skills. I am looking forward to taking advantage of the further opportunities provided by the contacts and knowledge of the team at North Kent College.”

Matt Baker, Emergency Medical Response Training Manger at Kent Fire and Rescue Service, said: “This joint exercise planned by KFRS, involving air ambulance, police medics, armed forces and fire crews from both Dartford and Tonbridge has been a great success. On a community level, involving the students and the skills they have learnt at NKC has a made a big difference to the training, as it gives a level or realism, allowing the crews to treat them as real casualties to prepare them. The students have demonstrated some excellent work, and been 100% involved, even acting as casualties themselves. They were very professional throughout.”

Chloe Hsiao, Lecturer in Theatrical Make-up Artistry, had originally contacted Matt earlier in the year, as she thought it would be of benefit to the students to have this experience to add to their skill set. Remarking on the success of the opportunity, she said “This collaborative project with the local authorities was an extended activity for our learners to not only gain some real work experience, but also to contribute what they have learned back into the local community. They applied the special effects make-up they have learned at the College and stretched their knowledge and skills to recreate four different scenarios. It was very much like working in the situation of road traffic collision in a TV/Film setting. Our learners thrive to take on challenges, their work was outstanding, and our teaching team are very proud of them.”

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