How To Prepare for an Ultrasound Program

Many people decide they want to become a Sonographer because they have heard it is a good career and pays well. This may be true, but in order to be successful and know Ultrasound is the right career for you it takes time and preparation. People that apply to a well accredited program blind-sided with no experience in Ultrasound are not going to be as successful as a person that is well prepared and has done research and observations in the field.
So how do you prepare for an ultrasound program? There are many things that can be done before applying to a program. First to ensure it is the right profession that fits your lifestyle and second that you have enough experience and background to demonstrate knowledge about ultrasound to the interview panel at the time of applying. It is crucial to understand what Ultrasound consists of before investing your time and money into a specialty program.
First thing I recommend doing is getting out in the field and observing a Sonographer. Spend a full day to a full week in a clinic to get a true feeling of what a Sonographer’s day consists of. Maybe this will convince you that it is perfect for you or maybe you will walk away knowing you need to find a different career pathway. Many people see Sonographer’s as “picture takers.” However, Sonographers are far from just picture takers. They must know all the pathology and medical terminology in order to report their findings back to the radiologist so that they can make an informative diagnosis. Radiologists rely on the Sonographer’s findings and reports to make an accurate diagnosis. Therefore it is important to see behind the scenes before deciding ultrasound in the right career pathway.
Another easy way to prepare yourself for an ultrasound program is to do research and find out the job outlook. The pay, hours, whether there is a high or low demand in your area may also affect your decision. From the research I have done I know that the pay is good and the hours are flexible depending on the clinic and that there is a high demand. However, all of these factors might be different from person to person and from area to area. The best thing you can do is research and talk with students or Sonographers that are actually experiencing the job at that time.
Personally, the best things I did to prepare myself for the ultrasound program at Bellevue College was hours and hours of observation. I observed many different Sonographers at different clinics and in different specialties from cardiac to general to get a better idea of what fit my personality. I also worked in a clinic for 3 years that had US, MRI, CT, and x-ray. This gave me a great perspective of how all the modalities work and what a normal day would like in Ultrasound. There is no better way to prepare for ultrasound technician schools than to get your foot in the door and observe what your future would look like as a Sonographer.

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This entry was posted in General Radiology Ultrasound