About Platinum

Our History

Platinum Educational Group is a global leader in online testing, tracking, scheduling, and reporting. Our areas of focus include the Emergency Medical Services, Allied Health, and Nursing industries. Since 2002, we have provided valid and reliable online testing with EMSTesting for the EMS profession. In 2016, we launched PlatinumTests to provide testing for Registered Nursing educational institutions. PlatinumPlanner, our scheduling software program includes the EMS, Nursing, and all Allied Health industries.

With more than 75 years of combined education, testing, and scheduling expertise, we provide services to several thousands of individuals, businesses, and organizations globally via our main office in Grandville, Michigan, and affiliated locations throughout the United States.

Read our testimonials to see how we have improved thousands of student examination outcomes and ultimately improved patient care.

Our Mission: Deliver valid and reliable testing, assessment, scheduling, skill tracking, and reporting solutions.

Our Vision: Every learner in the world can benefit from our solutions.

About Us

Learn more about Platinum Educational Group’s experienced leadership team and talented employees below!


Doug Smith, CEO

Doug is a co-founder of Platinum Educational Group. He is a licensed Paramedic and Instructor Coordinator in the state of Michigan and has been involved in EMS for over 20 years. Doug has a Master’s Degree in Education and has taught numerous instructor classes. He is involved as a committee chair for the National Association of EMS Educators and has spoken at numerous State and National Conferences. He is also the past president of the State of Michigan EMS Instructor Coordinators and was the 2003 EMT of the year for the State of Michigan.


Thomas Gottschalk, COO

Thomas is a co-founder of Platinum Educational Group. He has been involved in EMS as a practitioner and instructor since 1986. Tom maintains Nationally Registered certification and is a licensed Instructor Coordinator in the state of Michigan. When not serving as the companies Chief Operation Officer he works as a Critical Care Paramedic for both pediatrics and adults patients in the 911 system of Grand Rapids, MI. He is a previous National Star of Life recipient and remains passionate about teaching EMS topics like emergency driving to his colleagues. As dad and entrepreneur his recreational hobby list is short but does include biking, dog walking and challenging traditional thinking via humor.


Jason Jensen, CIO

Jason joined Platinum Educational Group in early 2012 as our IT Director and as of September 2015 became CIO. He is one of the main architects and developers behind EMSTesting.com. Previous to joining our team, he developed many large scale web sites. Jason not only has a track record of quickly taking on new projects and applying innovative solutions to make them succeed, he has a great passion for self-improvement and continued learning in the programming and web development field. Jason’s hobbies include anything computer related.


Jeff Dykstra, National Sales Director

Jeff Dykstra currently works for Platinum Educational Group as our National Sales Director. Jeff has over 13 years of sales and leadership experience and obtained a Masters of Business Administration in 2010. In his free time he is an adjunct professor at two local colleges, a sports fanatic, and loves spending time with his wife and two children.


Tom Slattery, Client Solutions Consultant

Tom Slattery currently works for Platinum Educational Group as a Client Solutions Consultant. Tom has 25+ years of customer service, sales and management experience with an emphasis on a top-notch client experience. Tom makes sure to surround himself with family and great friends in his spare time. He is an avid sports enthusiast, enjoys dining out and listening to live music.


Courtney Dubay, Client Solutions Consultant

Courtney DuBay currently works for Platinum Educational Group as a Client Solutions Consultant. Ms. DuBay started with Platinum Educational Group as a Customer Account Specialist in October 2013. In Courtney’s spare time she enjoys spending time with her family and her dog and you will usually find her at a beach or a coffee shop when she is not at work.


John Zimmer, Client Relations Manager/Human Resources

John joined Platinum Educational Group in October 2013 as our Client Relations Manager. Prior, John worked for 20+ years for a nationwide engineering recruiting firm specializing in the chemical industry, in both Sales and Management roles. He even worked for a short duration as an EMT-Basic for a detox center, after gaining an interest in Emergency Medicine. John has a Bachelor’s degree in Communications, earned a CPC certification in 2006, and won two network recruiting awards over his career. His role is to ensure that our current clients nationwide are taking full-advantage of our programs, while improving our clients’ overall experience.


Jeremy Johnson, Marketing Director

Jeremy Johnson started at Platinum Educational Group in 2015 as Director of Marketing. Jeremy is a Gaylord, Michigan, native and a graduate of Davenport University. He relocated to the Grand Rapids area after an honorable discharge from the US Navy in 2001 after 5 years of duty on the USS Nimitz. Jeremy has an extensive background in business management, public relations, social media, and marketing. Jeremy enjoys spending time with his wife, Katie, and son Jace.


Desiree Dykstra, Special Projects Coordinator

Desiree joined Platinum Educational Group in July 2017 as our Special Projects Coordinator. Desiree has obtained an Associates Degree from Grand Rapids Community College, with hopes of pursuing a Bachelors Degree in the near future. Desiree’s hobbies include reading and writing. In her spare time, she enjoys watching TV, online shopping, hanging with friends, and playing with her handsome Doberman pup named Prince.


John Spencer, Director of Education

John began working with Platinum Educational Group in August 2015 and became the Director of Education in August 2019. He is a licensed Paramedic and Instructor Coordinator in the state of Michigan. He brings with him over 20 years of experience in EMS and 10 years in the fire service. John is a certified fire fighter, Critical Care Paramedic, AHA Basic and Advanced Cardiac Life Support Instructor, as well as a NAEMT Prehospital Trauma Life Support and Emergency Pediatric Care Instructor. In his free time, he enjoys working the ambulance in the 911 system of Kalamazoo, MI, serving as a member of the security and medical response teams at his church, hunting, fishing, camping and anything that involves spending time with his wife and six children. John is a previous National Star of Life recipient and is passionate about advancing professionalism in EMS by teaching with a focus on the Affective domain.


Eric Cheadle, Customer Support Manager

Eric joined Platinum Education Group as a Customer Service Advocate in November 2015 and in August 2019 became Customer Support Manager. He brings decades of both Technical Support and Help Desk Support experience. Eric obtained a degree in Computer Networking from Davenport University. He also has an Associates in Recording/Engineering from Mcnally Smith College of Music. In his free time Eric enjoys coffee, movies, all manner of games, vegan cooking, laughing and music.


Sarah Smith, Customer Training/Production Software Tester/Customer Support Advocate

Sarah joined Platinum Educational Group as a Customer Service Advocate in April 2015. She has worked in the customer support and service field for more than a decade and is excited to bring her talents and artist background to assisting Platinum customers. When not working she spends her time drawing, painting, sculpting, and anything remotely crafty.


Beatrice Alegria, Customer Support Advocate

Beatrice joined Platinum Educational Group as a Customer Service Advocate in February 2019. She has a strong background in Customer Service and Sales and has worked for many large corporate companies. She believes customer service is the foundation for a successful company. Beatrice enjoys helping people and sharing her knowledge. When she is not working she enjoys cooking, listening to music and spending time with her family and friends.


Jennifer Diemer, Accountant

Jennifer joined Platinum Educational Group as an employee in August 2015, prior to that she had been subcontracted to them for about three years through an accounting firm. She specializes in QuickBooks and pays great attention to detail. Jennifer has been working in the accounting field for five years. In her spare time she loves to hang out with her daughter or at the beach and shopping.


Erika Jensen, UI/UX Designer/Developer

Erika joined Platinum Educational Group in August 2013 as our UI/UX Designer/Developer. Along with designing and developing our main products, Erika created our web site and designs our marketing and trade show booth materials. Erika has vast experience as a designer/developer hybrid and has worked in the educational field and for many large companies. Erika has a passion for web development and creative design. She likes keeping up with new trends and techniques in the field. She also has 3 dogs, and enjoys taking them to the park when the weather is nice.


Sam Bronkema, Senior Developer

Sam joined Platinum Educational Group in early 2014 as a Senior Developer. Sam began his career as a consultant and developer in the accounting software industry. He has extensive experience creating mobile and web applications and services. In the educational arena, he has worked on math and speed reading programs as well as software that delivers standards-based curriculum to the public school system. His favorite things are science, liberty, and cheese burgers and he enjoys traversing the planet and learning new things.


Eric Pike, Senior Developer

Eric Pike joined Platinum Educational Group in the later part of 2014 as a Senior Developer. He has many years of experience and started programming at the age of 16. He has over 24 years of experience in professional software development, and 18 years of management experience. He has a diverse and expansive range of experience that includes: accounting systems, shop-floor integration, enterprise business intelligence, mobile applications, and building high-scale public web sites. His hobbies are working with technology, music, and reading. He has also earned a 2nd-degree black-belt in Shorin-Ryu Karate and blue belts in Brazilian Ju-Jitsu under Royce Gracie and Jorge Gurgel.


Benjamin Hurst, Tier 2 Software/Development Tester

Benjamin joined Platinum Educational Group as a Customer Service Advocate in June 2015 and joined the Development Team as a QA Tester in February 2018. He is currently taking classes pursuing his Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science focusing on Programming. He has been married for 8 years and has 2 daughters a dog and a cat. His hobbies involve playing the XboxOne, preferably FPS, watching movies, UFC, working on cars, fishing, hunting, boating, and ATV’s.


Korben Rand, Data Scientist

Korben joined Platinum Educational Group as a Customer Service Advocate in January 2018 and became a Data Scientist in June 2019. He has worked several years in the customer service industry and is driven to provide excellent customer service with a focus on quality and making a connection with customers. Korben approaches life and work with a mindset of upholding a principle of peace, honesty, and care as few other things are more important to him. In his free time Korben enjoys reading, acquiring new hobbies, and taking care of his numerous pets.


Larry Stalsonburg, Medical Director

Larry has ben actively involved in EMS and Emergency Medicine for nearly 50 years. He started his career with an ambulance service in Grand Rapids, MI in 1971. After completing medical school he went into emergency medicine. He has been involved with EMS training for many years both in the class room and in the field. He also served as Medical Director and Asst. Medical Director for the Michigan BTLS program for many years. Larry became a licensed EMT in 2011 with the goal to better serve as Medical Director for one of the fire services in Traverse, MI. He joined Platinum Education in 2012. He enjoys Hunting, fishing, reading and traveling.

Larry Stalsonbury’s Curriculum Vitae (CV)