CAMBRIDGE — Eldorado-Brookview Volunteer Fire Department member Olivia Santos just finished her introduction level fire fighting course.
Santos, a 2020 graduate of North Dorchester High School, joined the company in 2019, and completed the EMT class before embarking on Firefighter 1.
“It was a challenging class, but I made it through,” Santos said, adding the hardest part was that the course was “out of my comfort zone.”
“I didn’t really see myself as a firefighter,” said Santos of her feeling that lasted until the class transitioned from classroom learning to what she called “the practical stuff.” Santos said the best part of the course was getting some “real experience.”
Santos experienced a different kind of challenge last year when she was taking the EMT class, when the class was canceled for three months, then switched to virtual learning online. Upon completion of that course, she became a nationally registered and Maryland state-certified EMT.
While attending NDHS, Santos was active in volleyball, winter cheerleading and softball, as well as Key Club, Honor Society, and several other academic clubs. She was also class president during her junior and senior years and is currently enrolled in the emergency vehicle operator class.
She is attending the paramedic program at Chesapeake and plans to transfer to a four-year university to major in biology. Her ultimate goal is to become a physician’s assistant and live and work on the Eastern Shore.
“I’ve grown up with it; my mom works in the hospital,” Santos said of her inclination to the medical field. She said her interest in forensic science shifted when her matriculation in bio-med programs introduced her to the study of anatomy and trauma medicine. Santos took those classes through the Dorchester Career and Technology Center at NDHS.
She grew up in Federalsburg, “on the Dorchester side,” and opted to join EBVFD because of connections through family friends.
EBVFC Chief Brad Murphy said, “The Eldorado-Brookview fire department is lucky to have Olivia in the department. She has dedicated a lot of her time for training to better herself in the emergency service. We look forward to seeing what the future holds for her.”