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June 19, 2021

5/19/2021 9:48:00 AM
SW Tech student uses emergency training in life-threatening situation

When faced with a life-threatening situation, people have varying reactions. For Hannah Masters, a Criminal Justice Studies student and employee with the Campus Security Program at Southwest Wisconsin Technical College, she was faced with such a scenario recently.
A Kendall, Wisconsin native, Masters was visiting her family during spring break when she was called into action. While driving in a rural area near her home with her boyfriend and her brother, a man ran into the road and flagged down the vehicle. As Masters explains it, the man was panicked and describing that his wife was choking. Her training as part of the Criminal Justice program, as well as the Campus Security Program, kicked in. She instructed her brother to call 911 immediately and she expected to use CPR for the first time momentarily. She was CPR certified as part of the Campus Security Program training.
Upon entering the residence, Masters assessed the situation. "I immediately knew what was happening," she said. The woman was pregnant, laying on her back and clearly choking, however, it was not an instance where CPR was need. Instead, Masters recognized that the woman was having a seizure and she moved her onto her side. The woman was then able to catch her breath. "It was a high-stress situation," said Masters. "There were a lot of people in the room who were panicking. They didn't know what was going on. I was communicating with her husband."
Masters and her brother both have epilepsy and experience seizures, so she was able to recognize what was happening.
Eventually, the county sheriff and EMS personnel arrived on the scene.
"Hannah has grown tremendously in the past several months while working in the Campus Security Program at Southwest Tech," said Tom Kretschman, criminal justice instructor. "Through the training and experience she has gained in this role, she was prepared for this unexpected emergency. In a time of need, Hannah was able to serve others in a highly stressful environment, and by doing so was able to make a positive difference in another person's life. I am confident that this is the first of many, many such accomplishments that Hannah will have in her career."
Masters is humble, saying she did what anyone would have done. "I think anyone would have done the same thing," she said. "All of the other security officers are awesome and they would have done this."
"Hannah is just the type of individual that we seek to be a police officer," said Kretschman. "She is kind, caring, empathetic and is always looking for ways to help anyone she encounters. Hannah has an amazing and positive personality, but behind her smile, there is great strength, determination and resolve." 
Ever since she can remember, Masters has always wanted to be a police officer. "It's nice helping people especially when they are in crisis," she said. "I have definitely solidified my decision to be in this profession."
Masters is happy to report that the woman later successfully delivered her baby and they are both healthy.

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