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Meet Alex – from telecommunications to paramedicine

Meet Alex – from telecommunications to paramedicine

Meet Alex – from telecommunications to paramedicine

Paramedics come from all walks of life, from those driven by a childhood desire to help people to those later in life who decide that paramedicine is where their future lies. People like Alex. Alex built a long career in telecommunications before making a huge career shift to becoming a paramedic.

Through his work with Next Generation Critical Communications and the Public Safety Network and experiencing firsthand what it’s like to work on the frontline of emergency services, Alex was inspired to make this life-changing decision.

Alex’s road to paramedicine began in Next Generation Critical Communications

Alex had been working within the wider emergency services community in Aotearoa New Zealand – at the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management and then Police. However, it was when he was assigned to the Next Generation Critical Communications (NGCC) programme that he worked closely with other emergency services, including Wellington Free. 

Alex began work with NGCC in October 2017. NGCC is an organisation that’s responsible for developing the new Public Safety Network on behalf of Fire and Emergency New Zealand, Police, Hato Hone St John, and Wellington Free Ambulance. The Public Safety Network is delivering three complementary communication technologies to enable the emergency services in Aotearoa with modern, secure, digital communications infrastructure for everyday and large-scale response needs to help keep responders safe and supported to serve our communities.

Experiencing the emergency services in action

As part of his NGCC induction in October 2017, Alex was able to observe the work of Police, Fire and Emergency NZ and Wellington Free, first-hand. He recalls that he “enjoyed all his observation shifts and developed a newfound respect for all our frontline emergency workers”.

However, it was Alex’s experience with Wellington Free that was to change the course of his career and life. As he explains:

“There was something particularly special about my ambulance experience that got under my skin. I hadn’t quite appreciated what expert clinicians paramedics are, and the very human experience of seeing people of all walks of life in their hour of need in their homes, workplaces or in public areas.”

Following his experience, he asked the crew how they became paramedics and discovered he could become an Event Medic. After a year of being an Event Medic, Alex also applied for a role as a casual Patient Transfer Officer. He undertook both roles in his spare time over the next few years.

‘Taking the plunge’ into paramedicine

After working in telecommunications for 25 years, Alex made a big career change when he decided to become a paramedic. He explains what the motivation was behind this decision:

“I was reaching the mid-point of my working life and had moved through various roles from engineering, sales, management, and consulting. I had a desire to do something different and was really enjoying the ambulance work. It was a pretty big deal to start again, especially with a mortgage and four kids, but my family was supportive, and I felt like something radically different was achievable. 

“In 2020 the world was turned on its head with COVID-19 and I felt like there were plenty of people making much bigger decisions than I was contemplating, and perhaps I should just do it. That way I wouldn’t always wonder, and if things didn’t work out, I could always go back. 

“So, I took the plunge and enrolled in a Bachelor of Health Science (Paramedicine) and joined classmates younger than my own children in 2021! It was a great experience, and I was fortuitous to obtain a permanent role at Wellington Free Ambulance as a Graduate Paramedic and started full time work in February 2024.”

Welcome to the team Alex, we’re so glad you’re here!



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