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Radiologic Technology Degree

Radiologic TechnologistHave you ever heard the cliché “you’ve got to strike while the iron is hot”? Sure it’s a little hokey and obvious. But many times, a cliché becomes a cliché because it’s true.

Such is the case with this one. Especially when the issue at hand is your career, and your future. You’ve got to be aware of what’s happening on the landscape of possible career fields, recognize when an amazing opportunity presents itself, and act on it.

Which leads us to the field of radiologic technology.

Radiologic technologists are an essential member of any healthcare team. They need to bring a blend of technical skill and acumen working with state-of-the-art imaging technology and equipment, as well as compassion and solid “people” skills, since they’re working directly with patients who may be scared and uncomfortable.

Additionally, they need to be confident and capable of working with physicians and nurses, and delivering to them the best possible work with clear communication skills.

In an earlier blog we talked about a big misperception about radiologic technology—the fact that there are so many different specialty areas within the field. What we didn’t talk about then was something just as good, if not more exciting.

Job growth.

If you’re in the process of searching for a new career for whatever reason, the timing really couldn’t be better to consider radiologic technology.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for radiologic technologists across the country is expected to grow nine percent between 2014 and 2024. This rate of growth is faster than the average for all other occupations, with an expectation of approximately 20,700 new positions opening in that time frame nationwide.

When you break it down by state, Illinois is also expected to experience growth in the need for skilled, well-trained radiologic technologists according to O*Net Online, with around 150 job openings statewide every year between 2014 and 2024.

Job openings is just part of the equation. Radiologic technologists benefit from solid income in a secure profession. O*Net indicates that the median annual income for radiologic technologists nationwide is $57,450. And in Illinois it gets even better, with a median annual income well above the national average, at $61,530.

So what’s driving all of this opportunity? Several factors.

  • An aging population—as more and more Baby Boomers reach old age and a higher percentage of Americans aged 65 and older, it means more individuals who will be in need of healthcare and medical imaging provided by radiologic technologists.
  • More people insured through the ACA—while the future of healthcare in the U.S. is still uncertain, the Affordable Care Act remains the law of the land and as long as it is, there will be millions more Americans who are insured and, as a result, regularly frequenting medical centers and healthcare facilities for treatment.
  • Advances in technology—with the constantly evolving technology and new innovations in the equipment and resources used in healthcare, it requires professionals who are adaptable and able to effectively use the newest technology.

But regardless of the reasons behind the growing need for radiologic technologists, the fact remains that it means a wealth of opportunities for individuals looking to improve their future.

To make it happen, it takes a respected and well-rounded education and training program. The ideal educational opportunities should include:

  • Accreditation
  • Hands-on training
  • Experienced faculty
  • Outstanding facilities and learning resources

Northwestern College’s Radiologic Technology Program

Established in 1902, Northwestern College has a rich history of serving students in the greater Chicago area who are looking for a quality education and training that’s focused and comprehensive. With programs in healthcare and business, Northwestern College offers accredited programs and is founded on the mission of meeting the distinct needs of each student who walks through its doors.

The Radiologic Technology program at Northwestern College offers students a true insider’s look at the medical community and delivers both the foundational knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in the profession, as well as a wide range of options for specialization.

The program provides didactic, laboratory, and clinical practicum instruction. Radiography curriculum includes courses such as:

  • Anatomy and positioning
  • Patient care
  • Radiation protection
  • Radiation physics
  • Digital imaging critique and evaluation
  • Medical terminology
  • Medical ethics
  • Radiobiology
  • Pathology
  • Registry review
  • Professional development

The Radiologic Technology program at Northwestern College is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT), www.jrcert.org.  The program also affords students flexibility and convenience so they can earn their degree without sacrificing their current job or other responsibilities.

Classes are conveniently available at Northwestern College’s Oak Lawn campus. And with a variety of course scheduling options, the Radiologic Technology program presents an ideal path toward a fulfilling career in healthcare.

By the time the program is complete, it’s expected that students will be able to:

  • Be clinically competent entry-level radiographers
  • Communicate effectively
  • Use critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Show professional responsibility, development, and lifelong learning

A Powerful Combination

With all of the professional opportunities afforded those looking for a career as a radiologic technologist, and with Northwestern College’s Radiologic Technology program, students will find a powerful combination for success.

Northwestern College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, 230 S. LaSalle St., Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604, www.hlcommission.org. Review our consumer information at www.nc.edu/ci.