Wake Technical Community College in Raleigh, North Carolina, is the largest community college in the state, serving approximately 70,000 students. At the Perry Health Sciences Campus, students take courses that prepare them for certification as emergency medical technicians and paramedics. Instruction is enhanced by a simulation suite where students practice hands-on scenario-based medical procedures on high-fidelity mannequins in an apartment-like setting monitored through PTZ video cameras and ceiling microphones. Video and audio of simulation sessions are recorded and streamed for viewing at debriefing sessions and for real-time peer reviews. Wake Tech’s IT and AV staff designed the simulation suite AV system in-house. The Raleigh office of pro AV integrator Inter Technologies handled system installation and commissioning. As one of Inter Technologies’ trusted suppliers and Wake Tech’s vendor of choice, Extron provided the project’s AV switching, distribution, control, and audio products.
“Extron was incredibly helpful in assisting with the design of the EMS simulation suite. They helped us create a solution that met all of our goals. We built a high-end simulation environment for a fraction of the normal cost of a system with this much capability,” says Jennifer Unitis, Manager of Academic Computing at Wake Tech. “Faculty and students find the system easy to operate and are fully satisfied.”
Each of the simulation suite’s four rooms is equipped with a PTZ camera on the wall and a beam-tracking pendant microphone on the ceiling. An Extron DXP PLUS Series matrix switcher routes the HDMI video from the cameras. Two HDMI outputs from the video matrix switcher feed an SMP streaming media processor, providing the means to record and stream training sessions from two simulation rooms simultaneously. Recordings are played back for debriefs. Live or recorded content is streamed over the network to overflow classrooms or over the internet via Zoom, allowing larger student groups to observe training sessions. Extron ceiling speakers paired with an Extron amplifier provide crystal clear sound in the simulation suite. The instructor controls the medical mannequins from a laptop running software from the mannequin manufacturer. AV system functions are controlled from a 24″ touchscreen display that interfaces to an IPCP Pro control processor via a TLI Pro TouchLink interface unit. The TLI Pro allows a third-party touchscreen display to be used as a point of control within an Extron control system and includes an HDMI input for video preview of images from the PTZ cameras in the simulation rooms.