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CRT's Casualty Simulation
Students on the Campus Response Team (CRT) train rigorously in order to provide the best possible assistance they can with on-campus emergencies. One of the ways the Team trains is through their termly Casualty Simulation Event (CasSim), a first-aid competition where CRT responders are grouped into teams of three and are faced with a variety of first-aid scenarios that aim to simulate medical emergencies including traumatic injuries, poisoning, and asthma, as well as mental health crises.
“Our responders love the competitive aspect, [but] on the other side, we’re able to throw difficult scenarios at them which test beyond just textbook first-aid knowledge,” said CRT Training Directors Tim Zhang and Emily Johnston.
CRT is one of 12 student-run services under Federation of Students. For 20 years, CRT has been a crucial part of student safety, offering first-aid services to many on-campus events and activities.
The CasSim competition also involves things like potential environmental hazards, difficult casualties, creative challenges, as well as putting teams through a Mass Casualty Incident (MCI), which could mean teams of three are faced with around fifteen casualties at a time.
“Teams need good communication, teamwork, adaptability, and quick problem-solving to succeed,” said Zhang and Johnston.
Every CasSim features different scenarios and themes. Planning for each CasSim by CRT's Training Team spans a two month long period, as they carefully plan out how to simulate Standard First Aid and other scenarios covered in their own internal training.
CasSim is not only meant to spur some friendly competition between responders, but it also serves as an important training experience, which Zhang and Johnston liken to a cumulative exam.
In addition to learning life-saving skills, being a part of CRT has a number of other benefits.
“I think the experience of responding to campus emergencies builds self-confidence like nothing else, and helps anyone develop a lot of those transferable skills employers are always looking for,” they said.
This term’s winning team consisted of Sam Mun, Marielle Gibson and Kevin Choi - congrats!
CasSim also takes volunteers from the student community to help simulate casualties. For any students considering applying for CRT in the future, volunteering for CasSim offers a close look into how responders tackle emergencies. Even if you're not considering joining CRT, Zhang and Johnston encourage any students to sign up as CasSim volunteers.
“Depending on the term, we will usually see upwards of 30-40 volunteer casualties,” they said. “Even for those not interested in applying, the day is full of chaotic fun, plus free food, loot bags, and a chance to win a load of raffle prizes.”
Interested in being a part of CasSim next term? Stay updated on Facebook to find out when the sign-ups open. And for those looking to apply to CRT, Zhang and Johnston’s best advice is to share who you are and don't give up.
“Aside from getting your Standard First Aid and any level of CPR, we want to see you as a human first, someone who can talk to people and think critically with an open mind,” they explained. “If you don't make it in on your first try, we highly encourage you to come out to CasSim and reapply later. A good amount of our team didn't make it in on their first try either!”
CRT provides a supportive environment to encourage anyone with an interest to come out and join the team:
“We pride ourselves in fostering a family dynamic to the team, where everyone is friendly and approachable.”