Featured Certificant: Nicholas Lemek

Nicholas Lemek, AAC, IAAI-FIT

Firefighter/Paramedic, ASHER Specialist
Why did you choose your profession?
Since I was a child, I’ve always wanted to help people. I wanted to be part of something bigger than myself. To really make a difference in the city I love and protect people. Becoming a firefighter and a paramedic just made sense. I could help people when they really needed it. I could be there when somebody needed to step up and do what had to be done.
What’s your favorite part about what you do?
The best part about being a firefighter and a paramedic is that no day is the same. There are always new challenges and experiences. I really am fortunate to be in a position where I can be there for people. Helping people, knowing that you’re making a difference really keeps me motivated to be at the forefront of new ideas and technology in my field.
How has your IBCCES training/credential helped you in your career?
My IBCCES training and subsequent credential happened by accident. I know that seems strange. I was working on a medic unit and we had a call with a person on the autism spectrum. I started thinking about emergencies and emergency response and how these dynamic situations impact people in the autism community. I reached out via social media for help on finding ways that the Omaha Fire Department could improve our service for members of our community and got in touch with the Autism Action Partnership. They ended up donating sensory kits to every medic unit in Omaha. It was amazing.
How do you use/implement what you learned in the IBCCES certification training?
The autism spectrum is a rainbow. We’ve made emergency responses in our community and helped people on the autism spectrum. One of the biggest benefits of my training is that it really gave me a new perspective on how we as firefighters and paramedics serve all the members of our community. It also taught me to dig deeper to understand people, not just those on the autism spectrum but every person we serve. People matter. Always.

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