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Radiologist Assistant Career Path Expands Rad Tech Role

Radiologist Assistant Career Path Expands Rad Tech Role

Cindy Mehallow / Monster Contributing Writer

Program lengths also vary. Loma Linda offers two 21-month programs, a post-baccalaureate certificate program and a program leading to a bachelor’s degree. Except for a brief on-campus stint each quarter, the Loma Linda program is almost entirely online.

But tuition doesn’t come cheap. According to data from the school, for the 2007-08 year, Loma Linda charged approximately $28,500 for the certificate program and $31,400 for the bachelor’s program. Seven Loma Linda students received tuition reimbursement from their employers. Students can also look into military benefits, grants, student loans and scholarships from the ASRT Education and Research Foundation.

RA graduates can earn certification by passing an ARRT-administered exam that’s offered twice a year. Most states will license RAs under the radiologic technologist designation.

Competitive Entry Requirements

Entrance requirements vary but are rigorous. After finding many applicants lacked the necessary humanities courses, Laura Alipoon, EdD, RT, Loma Linda’s RA program director, now is suggesting that prospective students complete their general education requirements before applying to the RA program. “We’re not trying to make it hard,” she says. “We’re trying to make it what it needs to be.”

To earn a slot in an RA program, Powers suggests contacting the program you’re interested in to learn its selection criteria and then developing a plan to become a strong candidate. Counselors can help you select the courses you may need, such as advanced research, pathophysiology or pharmacology, to improve your candidacy.

“Candidates need to get ready to compete, especially those who have been out of school for a while,” Powers says.

But their efforts could ultimately pay off. RAs are expected to earn between $80,000 and $100,000, well above the national mean RT salary of about $59,000, according to the ASRT’s 2007 Wage and Salary Survey. Even before she graduated, Mallavarapu was entertaining three job offers, including one paying more than $100,000.

This article originally appeared on Monster Career Advice.

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