How to Choose an X-Ray Tech Degree Program near Galena Alaska
Congratulations on your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Galena AK in order to train to be a radiology technologist. And now that you have chosen to enter the gratifying field of healthcare, exactly how do you tackle picking the ideal school and program to ensure that you will receive the proper training to become a qualified practitioner? And because the majority of states do mandate that radiology technicians become licensed, depending on where you ultimately work you may need preparation to pass a licensing test. So it’s essential that you investigate each of the schools you are looking at so that you can compare each program. Many students begin by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and usually gravitate toward the most affordable cost. But while location and cost must be considered, there are additional significant qualifications also. For instance, you should ask whether or not the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they sponsor internships. These inquiries and others you should ask the colleges you are considering are presented later in this post. But first, let’s talk about what a radiology tech does and the degrees and education choices that are offered.
X-Ray Tech Job Description
There are a number of professional titles for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be referred to as radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiographers or radiology techs. Regardless of the name, they all have the identical principal job function, which is to use imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists might also provide radiation therapy for treating cancer. Many choose to perform as generalists, while others may choose a specialization, for example mammography. They may practice in Galena AK hospitals, clinics, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technologist may work with include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or “CAT” scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers have to care for their equipment and also frequently evaluate its performance and safety. They are also expected to retain complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Galena AK medical practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
Radiology Tech Degrees Offered
The basic prerequisite for attending a radiology tech school is to have received a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist students have the option to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among techs, generally requires 18 months to 2 years to finish depending on the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at as much as 4 years to finish and is more expansive in nature. Most students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are additional related majors that may be acceptable as well. Something to keep in mind is that Galena AK radiographer programs have a practical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It may typically be fulfilled by participating in an externship program which a large number of schools offer through local clinics and hospitals in their area. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any licensing or certification requirements in Alaska or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiographer Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an Radiologist college, based on the state where you will be working you may have to become licensed. Most states do require licensing, and their criteria differ so contact your state. Presently, all states that do mandate licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but a number approve other alternatives for testing also. A number of states also call for certification as a component of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is optional. Having said that, numerous Galena AK employers prefer to hire radiology techs that are certified so it could enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an accepted program in addition to a passing score on their rigorous exam. ARRT also demands re-certification every other year, which can be met with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.
Online Radiology Technician Programs
As a part of every degree program, x-ray tech schools will have practical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is the same for online degree colleges. So while you can still obtain your online degree, a significant portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a school lab or in an externship off campus. Clinical training is often carried out in area family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the schools. But the online section of the training can be attended in the privacy of your Galena AK residence. Students who keep working while obtaining their degree often find that the online approach to education is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online schools are often less costly than on-campus alternatives. In addition to lower tuition, expenses for commuting and study materials can be lessened also. But just be sure that the online college you pick is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are motivated enough to learn with this less formalized style of training, then an online school may be the best option for you.
Subjects to Ask Radiology Tech Programs
As soon as you have decided on the type of degree that you would like to obtain, you can initiate the process of locating and assessing Galena AK x-ray technician colleges. You will also have to determine if you want to attend classes online or travel to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then of course the location of the college will be relevant. The cost of tuition and supplementary expenditures will be a determining variable as well. But in addition to cost and location, what more should you factor in when comparing schools? Well, you need to find out if the colleges are accredited, and if they provide internship or externship programs. To help you uncover some of these crucial details prior to making your selection, we have assembled a list of questions that you must ask the schools you are assessing.
Are the Radiology Technician Colleges Accredited? The majority of radiology technician colleges have acquired some type of accreditation, whether national or regional. However, it’s still important to verify that the program and school are accredited. One of the most highly respected accrediting agencies in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Programs receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a detailed review of their instructors and educational materials. If the school is online it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets distance or online education. All accrediting agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with guaranteeing a superior education, accreditation will also assist in acquiring financial aid and student loans, which are many times not accessible for non-accredited schools. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And many Galena AK employers will only hire graduates of an accredited program for entry-level jobs.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out if the Alaska xray tech colleges you are evaluating have relationships with regional clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent means to get practical training in a clinical setting, they are also a way to fulfill the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Galena AK healthcare community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Help available? You will probably wish to secure employment quickly after graduating, but getting that initial job in a new profession can be difficult without support. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are interviewing have job placement programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are a good indication that the schools have large networks and good relationships with Galena AK healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For many students, the college they select will need to be within commuting distance of their Galena AK residence. Those who have opted to attend online classes naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you choose 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 for those students that live outside of their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the kind of student that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Galena AK colleges you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the radiology technician program also.
Does the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the x-ray tech college you finally select can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you opt to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in Galena AK, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family obligations.
Why Did You Want to Be an X-Ray Tech?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's helpful to reflect on questions you may be asked. One of the questions that interviewers often ask radiographer applicants is "What compelled you to select radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not merely the personal reasons you might have for being an X-Ray tech, but additionally what characteristics and talents you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining primarily to radiography, along with a certain number of general interview questions, so you need to ready several strategies about how you want to answer them. Considering there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you along with the abilities you have that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down several concepts and topics that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can help you to prepare your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
Select the Right X-Ray Tech Program near Galena AK
Enrolling in the appropriate radiology tech degree program is a critical first step toward launching a fulfilling new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiologic technologist must be in good physical shape. Radiology techs frequently stand for the greater part of the workday and position and sometimes lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Prospects must also show a capability to pay close attention to detail and to comply with the safety requirements designed to protect both the medical team and the patient. X-Ray technicians work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the doctors and radiologists. Having social skills is a must in order to have a productive work environment and provide the best available patient care. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of questions that you need to ask each school you are assessing prior to making your final decision. This is similarly true whether you decide on an online program or drive to classes on campus. By asking the right questions you can evaluate and compare each school so you can focus your options before making your final choice. And with the right education and your commitment to be successful, you can accomplish your goal to practice as a radiographer in Galena AK.
Some Background on Galena Alaska
Galena (/ɡəˈliːnə/) (Notaalee Denh[pronunciation?] in Koyukon) is a city in the Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area in the U.S. state of Alaska. At the 2010 census the population was 470.
The Koyukon Athabascans had seasonal camps in the area and moved as the wild game migrated. In the summer many families floated on rafts to the Yukon River to fish for salmon. There were 12 summer fish camps located on the Yukon River between the Koyukuk River and the Nowitna River. Galena was established in 1918 near an Athabascan fish camp called Henry's Point. It became a supply and point for nearby lead ore mines that opened in 1918 and 1919.
In 1941 and 1942, during World War II, a military air field was built adjacent to the civilian airport, and the two facilities shared the runway and flight line facilities. This air field was designated Galena Air Force Station shortly after the split of the United States Air Force from the United States Army, which occurred as a result of the National Security Act of 1947. During the 1950s, the construction of additional military facilities at Galena and the nearby Campion Air Force Station, in support of Galena's mission as a forward operating base under the auspices of the 5072nd Air Base Group, headquartered at Elmendorf Air Force Base, near Anchorage, provided improvements to the airport and the local infrastructure, causing economic growth for the area.
Following the end of the Cold War, in 1993, operation of Galena Air Force Station was turned over to a contractor, and all military personnel were withdrawn with only small groups of active personnel visiting the base on an as-needed basis. The former military facility remains in use effectively as a forward operating location that is used occasionally by the military. This use came under scrutiny by the Base Realignment and Closure Committee in the late 2000s and was officially closed October 1, 2010. The Air Force retains responsibility for toxin cleanup in the area and engineers from Eielson Air Force Base in Fairbanks still visit the site on occasion. The base is now totally controlled by the City of Galena, the Galena School District and the Alaska Department of Transportation. The Alaska Wing of the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) was pursuing[when?] retaining one of the F-16 fighter hangars as a CAP facility for the CAP Wing in Galena, the "Yukon Squadron".
The City of Galena gained notoriety in 2011 when it was noted in media reports as being the US community which received the most benefits from lobbying efforts. The town evaded bankruptcy by aggressively lobbying for state and federal funds for the GILA boarding school in the town, which produced funds that turned the city's finances around.
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