When Hucknall technician Katie Hufton spent her days in her sandwich shop dreaming of being a paramedic, she never thought that would one day become reality.
Katie, 48, thought that the job was out of reach for her and that the closest she would get to the ambulance service was chatting with EMAS staff who popped in to grab a bite to eat.
Fast forward a few years though and Katie has swapped the sandwich shop for saving lives on the frontline.
Katie joined EMAS in 2015 after finally deciding to pursue her life goal and at 43 became a 999 call handler. Within 10 months at EMAS, she had applied and been accepted onto the ambulance technician course.
Katie said: “I’ve always wanted to be a paramedic, but I thought my age would get in the way. Meeting and talking to people who did the job every day when in my shop pushed me to join the service and so after a bit of research, joining as a call handler gave me the opportunity to start my ambulance career.
“Not long after starting in the control room, the chance to train as a technician came up and so I thought why not? Why stop there and not follow my dream? When I received the message to say I had been accepted onto the course, I couldn’t believe it!
“I am so proud to do the job that I do, and my family couldn’t be prouder. My passion and commitment to helping people is what drives me and working as a technician has been so rewarding. It really is the best job in the world and no day is the same.
“I feel like I have found my niche and I wish I had taken the leap a long time ago. I think that even if I won £100m on the lottery, I would still come to work!
In January 2020, after encouragement from her colleagues, Katie applied to the EMAS paramedic course and was accepted.
"Working towards that dream of becoming a qualified paramedic over the next few months is the goal. I know it requires a lot of hard work, but I have already proven to myself what I can achieve in a short space of time.
“It really is never too late to achieve what you want from life and I would honestly encourage anyone to pursue their dream job, especially if it is within the ambulance service. It doesn’t matter about your age or background, as long as you are hardworking and committed, you can get there.”