December 23, 2020

Media Advisory – SIU’s Wilderness First Responder course

Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s Touch of Nature Environmental Center is hosting two intensive training workshops to prepare students and outdoor professionals and enthusiasts to handle medical emergencies when assistance may not be available or may take some time to arrive. Reporters, photographers and news crews are welcome to cover both. The Wilderness First Responder Full Certification Course is Jan. 2-8, 2021, and the open recertification course is Jan. 9-11.

The Wilderness First Responder Full Certification Course covers a wide range of topics, including patient assessment, body systems, trauma, environmental medicine, toxins, back-country medicine, wilderness rescue and much more. The fast-paced format features instruction each morning and practical skills practice each afternoon and evening, covering skills ranging from constructing a makeshift stretcher to full-scale rescue simulations.

The courses take place at Touch of Nature Environmental Center, about eight miles south of Carbondale on Giant City Road. Touch of Nature will comply with all state of Illinois COVID-19 safety guidelines, including limiting group sizes.

Darren Stokes, a certified wilderness medical technician with more than 30 years of experience as a professional outdoor guide and instructor, will lead the course.

Those who successfully finish the course will receive a three-year certification from Wilderness Medical Associates.

For more information or to arrange a visit to Touch of Nature to obtain photographs, video or interviews, contact Erik Oberg at 618-453-3945 or