Agency in Front of Old Main



University of Arizona Emergency Medical Services (“UAEMS”) is a 24/7/365 emergency response agency that is entirely managed, staffed, and supported by University of Arizona students. Since 2012, UAEMS has responded to 9-1-1 emergencies from students, faculty, staff, and visitors on-campus. UAEMS is one of 250+ collegiate EMS services in the nation under the National Collegiate Emergency Medical Services Foundation. Over this time, this program has grown from operating three nights per week on bicycles to being the preeminent emergency response service for the University of Arizona's main campus. UAEMS responds to an average of ~1,000 9-1-1 requests per year through the City of Tucson’s dispatch system. 

Beyond that, UAEMS supports numerous university departments through our medical standby services (approximately ~200 events per year), including establishing an incident command structure for Commencement, Tucson Festival of Books, and Spring Fling and providing customized medical standby for Centennial Hall, Campus Health Services, Athletics, and numerous student clubs. On-campus or in the surrounding vicinity, students, faculty, staff, and visitors can trust in UAEMS to respond in approximately half the time, or on average three minutes earlier, than a traditional Tucson emergency service and provide equivalent care by our continuously-trained, Arizona Department of Health Services certified EMTs. The University of Arizona Emergency Medical Services gives our students, faculty, and staff the chance to learn, grow, and succeed together through experiential learning, on-campus education and job opportunities, scholarships, healthcare career counseling, mentoring programs, and most importantly, thorough, high-quality emergency medical care.

Old UAEMS Patch

University of Arizona Emergency Medical Services (UAEMS), previously known as University of Arizona Student EMS (UASEMS), began in 2010 as a small club conceptualized from an honor's thesis project. UAEMS was fortunate to obtain medical direction from Banner University Medical Group within the year. 

Under this guidance, UAEMS began responding to 9-1-1 medical emergencies on the University of Arizona campus in March of 2012. Its operating hours were limited to Thursday through Saturday from 7 pm – 2 am. Headquarters were based out of the Associated Students of the University of Arizona office located on the 2nd floor of the Student Union Memorial Center. During the first semester in service, all responders utilized bicycles and limited medical equipment to respond to emergency calls.

In December of 2013, the University of Arizona Student EMS made an official transition from a club to a recognized EMS service of the University of Arizona. UAEMS began responding 24 hours, seven days a week, and changed from utilizing bicycles to a student government electric golf cart. Due to the high volume of calls and consistent use, the electric-powered vehicle was not practical for emergency response. UAEMS soon acquired a gas-powered utility cart for the 9-1-1 response. 

During 2014, UAEMS moved its headquarters to a new location - a 24-hour EMS station with sleeping quarters, office space, and a day room located on the bottom floor of the Kaibab-Huachuca dormitory. The following semester, UAEMS established Pima County Wireless Integrated Network (PCWIN) city and county dispatch systems into the UAEMS organization communications model. In 2015, UAEMS acquired a medically equipped Chevy Suburban, which became the primary vehicle for 9-1-1 response. In 2016, UAEMS was recognized as a Basic Life Support unit for the City of Tucson and became the first collegiate EMS agency in the nation to receive dispatch information through the local fire department's CAD (computer-aided dispatch) system. 

In 2020, UAEMS, in partnership with the College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture, acquired a two-story station on 7th street. In addition, the UAEMS team was fortunate to obtain a Ford Explorer response vehicle through community partnerships. The distinctive red vehicle can be seen today patrolling the campus and responding to medical emergencies. In 2021, the UAEMS fleet was again expanded to include a Tucson Fire Department donated Chevy Silverado truck. 

UAEMS is now marking its 10th year of service and owes its continued success to the commitment of our EMTs to serving the University of Arizona Campus.

The University of Arizona Emergency Medical Services wants to thank Dr. Hans Bradshaw, Dr. Philipp Hannan, Dr. Harry McDermott, and its many university and community stakeholders for their dedicated support that has made our growth and development possible. 

UAEMS has continued to respond to 9-1-1 requests without interruption since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic while implementing real-time and evolving mitigation strategies to provide lifesaving care for those on campus while maintaining the health and safety of our student employees. UAEMS has assisted the University of Arizona with pursuing their safer re-entry initiatives through close coordination with the COVID-19 re-entry ICS team in the following areas:

  • Transporting COVID-19 positive students to isolation housing during the initial Fall surge.
  • Antigen testing in coordination with the Test All Test Smart team for all returning students living on-campus.
  • Providing peer-to-peer education on COVID-19 prevention measures for our students.
  • Administering COVID-19 vaccinations to the Tucson community.

UAEMS Hierarchy

If you are interested in learning more about UAEMS first-hand, we offer the opportunity for members of the general public to complete a ride-along with our EMS crews. If you are interested in doing a ride-along with UAEMS, please use the link below.

UAEMS Ride-Along

Serving The University of Arizona Community 24/7/365.