Choosing an Ultrasound Technician Degree Program Eielson Afb Alaska
Once you have decided to pursue an ultrasound technician degree near Eielson Afb AK, the next step is to start the process of picking a school. To begin with, you must find the right program that will furnish the necessary instruction to become a skilled professional. And because some states do require that ultrasound techs be either certified or licensed, depending on where you will practice you may also need to be prepared to pass a licensing or certification exam. So it’s extremely important that you research each college in order to assess and compare your options. But just where does one begin? Many prospective students will begin by looking for colleges that are within driving distance of their homes and then by comparing tuition. Naturally cost and location should be considered when arriving at a decision, but there are other important factors also. For instance, if the ultrasound technician schools are accredited or if they sponsor internship programs. These and other qualifications will be addressed more in detail later in this post. But to start with, let’s go over what an ultrasound tech does and the degrees and online training options that are available.
Sonographer Work Summary
There are various acceptable titles for ultrasound techs (technicians). They are also referred to as sonogram techs, diagnostic medical sonographers (or just sonographers) and ultrasound technologists. No matter what their title is, they all have the same basic job description, which is to implement diagnostic ultrasound testing on patients. While many practice as generalists there are specialties within the field, for example in pediatrics and cardiology. The majority practice in Eielson Afb AK hospitals, clinics, outpatient diagnostic imaging centers and even private practices. Routine daily work duties of a sonogram tech may involve:
- Maintaining records of patient medical histories and details of each procedure
- Counseling patients by explaining the procedures and answering questions
- Readying the ultrasound machines for use and then cleaning and re-calibrating them
- Moving patients to treatment rooms and ensuring their comfort
- Using equipment while limiting patient exposure to sound waves
- Evaluating results and identifying necessity for additional testing
Ultrasound techs must frequently evaluate the safety and performance of their machines. They also are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct as health practitioners. In order to maintain that level of professionalism and remain up to date with medical knowledge, they are required to enroll in continuing education training on an ongoing basis.
Sonogram Technician Degree Programs Available
Ultrasound technician enrollees have the option to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree will generally require around 18 months to 2 years to finish based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at up to four years to finalize. Another alternative for individuals who have already obtained a college degree is a post graduate certificate program. If you have received a Bachelor’s Degree in any major or an Associate Degree in a related medical sector, you can enroll in a certificate program that will take only 12 to 18 months to finish. Something to consider is that almost all sonographer programs do have a practical training component as part of their curriculum. It often may be satisfied by taking part in an internship program which numerous colleges organize through Eielson Afb AK clinics and hospitals. When you have graduated from any of the certificate or degree programs, you will then need to fulfill the certification or licensing prerequisites in Alaska or whatever state you decide to practice in.
Topics to Ask Ultrasound Technician Colleges
As soon as you have determined which degree or certificate that you would like to obtain, you can start the process of assessing and comparing ultrasound technician schools. You may first want to decide whether you would rather access classes online or travel to a school campus in the Eielson Afb AK area. Obviously location will be important if you select the latter, and the cost of tuition no doubt will be an important qualification as well. But there are additional things that you should also take into consideration, for example if the schools are accredited and if they provide internships. Therefore in order to carry out your due diligence so that you can arrive at your ultimate selection, below are several questions that you may want to ask each sonographer school before deciding.
Are the Ultrasound Technician Programs Accredited? Most sonogram tech schools have earned some form of accreditation, whether regional or national. Nevertheless, it’s still important to confirm that the school and program are accredited. One of the most highly regarded accrediting agencies in the field of sonography is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS). Programs earning accreditation from the JRC-DMS have undergone a detailed review of their instructors and educational materials. If the college is online it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. All accrediting organizations should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with ensuring a premium education, accreditation will also assist in securing financial assistance and student loans, which are many times not available for non-accredited colleges. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And a number of Eielson Afb AK health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited school for entry level positions.
Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the sonogram tech schools you are assessing have associations with Eielson Afb AK hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent way to get practical experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a means to satisfy the clinical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a secondary benefit, they can help graduates and students form professional relationships in the Eielson Afb health care community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Help offered? You will probably wish to secure employment quickly after graduation, but finding that first job in a new field can be difficult without assistance. Find out if the ultrasound tech schools you are considering have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have sizable networks and good relationships with Alaska healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For many students, the college they choose will have to be within travelling distance of their Eielson Afb AK home. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit far in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are looking at what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the ultrasound tech program as well.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the sonographer college you ultimately pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Eielson Afb AK area, check that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Ultrasound Technician Online Programs
As previously mentioned, almost all ultrasound tech schools have a practical requirement to their programs. So while you can obtain a certificate or degree online, a substantial part of the training will be either carried out in an on campus laboratory or at an approved off campus facility. Clinical training can usually be satisfied through an internship at a local Eielson Afb AK outpatient clinic, hospital or private practice. But the remainder of the training and classes can be attended online in your Eielson Afb home. This is especially convenient for those individuals that keep working while getting their degrees. Plus online colleges are many times less costly than traditional alternatives. Expenditures for commuting and study materials may be reduced also. But just as with any sonography school you are looking at, confirm that the online program you select is accredited. One of the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). Accreditation is especially important for licensing, certification and finding employment (more on accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to attend classes outside of the classroom in the comfort of your own home, then an online school may be the right option for you.
Considering Enrolling in an Ultrasound Tech School near Eielson Afb AK?
If you are considering a Sonography Tech School in the Eielson Afb Alaska area, following is some interesting history and background information about the location of your new school campus.
Eielson Air Force Base
Eielson Air Force Base (AFB) (IATA: EIL, ICAO: PAEI, FAA LID: EIL) is a United States Air Force base located approximately 26 miles (42 km) southeast of Fairbanks, Alaska and just southeast of Moose Creek, Alaska. It was established in 1943 as Mile 26 Satellite Field and taken off deployment in 2007. It has been a Superfund site since 1989.
Its host unit is the 354th Fighter Wing (354 FW) assigned to the Eleventh Air Force of the Pacific Air Forces. The 354 FW's primary mission is to support Red Flag – Alaska, a series of Pacific Air Forces commander–directed field training exercises for U.S. Forces, joint offensive counter-air, interdiction, close-air support, and large force employment training in a simulated combat environment. These exercises are conducted on the Joint Pacific Alaskan Range complex with air operations flown out of the two bases.
Eielson AFB was named in honor of polar pilot Carl Ben Eielson. The 354 FW is currently commanded by Col. Benjamin W. Bishop. Bishop is a Command Pilot with more than 2,500 flight hours, including over 340 combat hours. He's flown the T-37, T-38, F-15E, F-35A, and F-16 C/D aircraft. He is responsible for providing realistic combat adversary training to United States and allied forces in air, space, and information operations via RED FLAG-Alaska, Pacific Air Forces’ premier multinational large-force training exercise, and through PACAF's only Aggressor Squadron. He also directs the preparation and deployment of Airmen in support of global operations, enables the staging of forces through Eielson, and integrates air component capabilities into the US Army's I Corps through the 1st Air Support Operations Group. Additionally, Colonel Bishop is overseeing preparations for the arrival of the F-35A Lightning II aircraft at Eielson Air Force Base.
Enroll in the Ideal Sonographer School Eielson Afb AK
Selecting the ideal ultrasound tech certificate or degree program is an important first step to starting a fulfilling new profession providing diagnostic services to patients. Ultrasound tech schools require that you have a high school diploma or a GED. Along with meeting academic requirements, you need to be in at least reasonably good physical health, able to stand for lengthy periods and able to regularly lift weights of fifty pounds or more, as is it typically necessary to adjust patients and maneuver heavy equipment. Additional desirable talents include technical aptitude, the ability to stay collected when confronted by an anxious or angry patient and the ability to converse in a clear and compassionate manner. As we have addressed in this post, there are several questions that you should ask each program you are reviewing. This is the case whether you select an online program or commute to the college campus to attend classes. And by asking the right questions so that you can assess each school, you will be able to narrow down your alternatives until you are left with the ideal program for your education. And with the proper training, discipline and motivation to succeed, you can reach your goal to work as an sonographer in Eielson Afb AK.
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