Become a CUSERT Responder!

Are you looking for a positive way to spend your free time that involves helping others in the Carleton community? Do you want to get to know other students, improve your first aid skills, and work directly with other members of Campus Safety Services? If so, CUSERT may be for you!  

Every year, we look for dedicated and motivated students to join our team of volunteer medical first responders.

We encourage people to apply from a wide variety of backgrounds. We strongly encourage you to apply if you believe in helping people and giving back to the Carleton community. We welcome applicants’ unique contributions in terms of their culture, ethnicity, race, sex, gender identity and expression, nation of origin, age, colour, religion, disability, and sexual orientation. The sum of our individual differences on CUSERT allows us to provide better quality patient care, and having a diverse team allows us to work better together.

Applications for the 2023-2024 academic year are now CLOSED! Sign up to be notified when applications for the 2024-2025 academic year open. 

How to Apply:

  1. Confirm that you are eligible

The first step in becoming a CUSERT responder is determining if you meet the eligibility requirements. To join CUSERT, you must: 

  • Be a current student at Carleton University with at least two academic terms (Fall 2023 and Winter 2024) remaining in your current degree program*
  • Have a valid Standard First Aid and CPR/AED Level C certification**
  • Have a clean criminal record and the ability to obtain a Vulnerable Sector Check on request and at your own expense***
  • Have a desire to help others in their community and work in a team 

*This includes students who will be starting at Carleton University in September 2023.

**These certifications are not required to apply but must be provided by September 17, 2023, to be considered. If you don’t have these certifications but plan on taking a Standard First Aid course before the application deadline, you are still welcome to apply. CUSERT will be holding these classes in September; please visit our First Aid Courses page for more information.

***Only successful applicants who are offered positions on our team will be asked to provide a Vulnerable Sector Check. CUSERT will provide successful applicants with a letter that may entitle the applicant to a reduced fee. For information on requirements and fees, please visit the Ottawa Police Service website or the website of the police service in your area.

  1. Considerations for Potential Applicants:

Time Commitment

CUSERT requires an ongoing commitment from its volunteers. The minimum commitment is:

  • Providing at least 24 hours of availability per week, including at least two weekend or overnight shifts. Of the availability you provide, you can expect to be assigned a minimum of 12 hours of on-call shifts per week
  • Attending a 2-hour training session each week
  • Completing periodic team-wide training, meetings, and evaluations (generally an extra 4 hours per month, usually on weekends)

In addition to these requirements, responders in their first year with CUSERT are required to provide some additional time as part of their First Year Training Program. The first year commitment includes:

  • Completing of a 40-hour Canadian Red Cross First Responder course 
  • Completing of a 12-hour Mental Health Commission of Canada Mental Health First Aid course 
  • Attending additional 1-hour weekly training sessions for the Fall 2023 term 
  • Other training as required. Dates will be communicated to responders well in advance
Hours of Service

CUSERT is a 24/7 service. As such, we rely on our volunteers’ flexibility to work various shifts, including weekends and overnights. Our time commitment requirements are the same for all members, so if you aren’t available for a specific type of shift, you should be prepared to provide the required availability through other shift types. 

Physical Demands

The work of a CUSERT first responder can be physically demanding and requires certain physical abilities. While the physical demands of the position are not constant, the nature of our on-call work means that responders can be called at any time. CUSERT responders must be able to:

  • Stand, sit, kneel, and lay down for an extended period
  • Carry a large backpack weighing approximately 20 kg (45 lbs) long distances, over uneven terrain, and up and down multiple flights of stairs. 
  • Work in a variety of conditions, including both indoors and outdoors in any weather
  • Carry out the functions of their position at any time of day, including when woken up at night

CUSERT first responders must be physically able to obtain all their certifications. This means you must be able to do things like chest compressions for CPR, which can be physically exhausting. 

Mental Wellbeing

The job of a first responder can be very rewarding, but it can also impact your mental health and wellbeing. Potential applicants should be prepared to work in intense, fast-paced situations. 

CUSERT works to provide a robust network of resources to its members and actively works to build resiliency within our team. However, the nature of the work of CUSERT first responders can become stressful. In this role, you could be called to respond to serious situations, including life-or-death emergencies. Applicants should consider how work on CUSERT could impact their mental wellness before applying. 

  1. Submit an Online Application

Applications are now closed.

  1. Application Assessment

Applicants invited to the next stage will be asked to complete an interview and written assessment. The interview is approximately 30 minutes long and contains standard and scenario-based questions. The written assessment must be completed in less than 1 hour and comprises situation-based questions. Both of these activities will happen online. Please let us know at if you require any accommodations.  

Note: If you do not submit your SFA and CPR certifications by September 17, 2023, to, your application will no longer be considered.  

Note: If you are invited to this stage, you will be required to provide the contact information for a minimum of two professional/academic references.  

  1. Applicant Evaluation

Following completion of the Assessment Stage, applicant files will be assessed by our recruitment team. Competitive applicants will be invited to our Initial Testing Weekend on September 23-24, 2023.  

Note: If you cannot attend the Initial Testing Weekend, your application will no longer be considered

  1. Receive an Offer

Successful applicants from the Evaluation Stage will be offered a position on CUSERT. 


If you have any additional questions or concerns, please email us at