The Charger Blog

Alum, Adjunct Paramedicine Professor Finds Fulfillment Educating Future Public Service Professionals

When Christopher Spoldi ’11, a North Haven, Conn., firefighter, was recently promoted to the rank of captain, he was surprised and touched to see several familiar faces at the ceremony: his students. He says their support reflects the closeness of the University’s paramedicine program that “feels like family.”

February 28, 2023

By Renee Chmiel, Office of Marketing and Communications

Left to right: Jack Mascari ’23, Dylon McCarthy ’23, Ajay Eggimann ’24, Christopher Spoldi ’11, Taylor Gawron ’23, and Steve Bagley ’23.
Left to right: Jack Mascari ’23, Dylon McCarthy ’23, Ajay Eggimann ’24, Christopher Spoldi ’11, Taylor Gawron ’23, and Steve Bagley ’23.

Christopher Spoldi ’11 always knew he wanted to pursue a career in public service. The son of a career firefighter, Spoldi says he “practically grew up in a firehouse.” He has since followed in his father’s footsteps, and he’s helping to educate the students who he will work beside and who will follow in his footsteps.

Spoldi, who has a background in firefighting and paramedicine, is also an adjunct paramedicine professor at the University. A member of the North Haven Fire Department, he was recently promoted to the rank of captain. The promotion ceremony was made even more meaningful for him because several of his students attended to show their support.

“I take pride in the department I work for, and I love the people I work with,” he said. “I enjoy being able to serve the community day in and day out. Having the students show up was a heartwarming surprise. The paramedicine program is made up of students from all over, and they have been working together since they started the program. This was a prime example of how close-knit the group is and how the program feels like family.”

A graduate of the University’s fire science program, Spoldi developed a respect and appreciation for the fire service at a young age. He started volunteering as soon as he was old enough, and he loves the feeling of knowing he’s made a difference. He also enjoys the camaraderie he’s developed with his colleagues, and he says they’ve become like family.

‘Help a new generation reach their goals’

Spoldi’s first job in the field of public service was actually in emergency medical services. He began serving as an emergency medical technician when he was 19 years old, working in an ambulance and gaining important field experience. Becoming a paramedic was also a way for him to set himself apart from other candidates as he prepared for a career as a firefighter.

Spoldi soon found he loved being a paramedic. He went on to work for several commercial companies, often working alongside area fire departments as they responded to emergency calls. His experiences helped him build the skills and knowledge he needed to excel as a paramedic – which he now brings to the classroom at the University.

“We engage in discussions related to the complex calls they are going to respond to, and I try to expose them to the different types of systems that are available to paramedics,” explains Spoldi, whose mom, Lucille, is assistant to the director of purchasing at the University. “This way, they are better prepared for the options they have available to them after they graduate.”

Spoldi has fond memories of his own time as a student, citing the myriad relationships he formed as especially beneficial. He also learned about the importance of networking and continuing his education. He’s excited to now be helping to create a similarly transformative experience for current students and future public service professionals.

“What I enjoy most about teaching at the University is being able to give back and help a new generation reach their goals,” he said. “I remember what it was like to sit in their seats and the stress that could come with being a student. There are many professors who I considered influential in helping me get started on my career path, and being able to do that now for these students is quite fulfilling.”