How to Become an Ultrasound Tech in 2018 in 5 Simple Steps
2017 was a popular year for ultrasound schools in Southern California. If you want to learn how to become an ultrasound tech, there’s no simple answer. Like anything worthwhile, you’ve got to do a little legwork in order to know the ins and outs of choosing the right ultrasound tech school. There are many sonography schools in California and Orange County, but it’s important to know what makes each of them different. Furthermore, what makes one of the ultrasound technician schools the best school for your needs?
Let’s take a look at five simple ways to navigate through choosing the best ultrasound technology school for you. Together, we’ll explore what makes for a good ultrasound program. We’ll also walk you through some factors to keep in mind when finding the best ultrasound school near you. After almost 40 years in diagnostic healthcare education, we’ve found that the little things matter. We’ve also met plenty of students over the years. For some students, we were their first choice. Others found us after navigating through a few hurdles in their sonography education.
Hopefully this guide can help you choose the best ultrasound/vascular technology school for your needs. While reading, keep in mind that we call these steps simple and not easy. The first step is usually the toughest, and in this case it’s no different. But starting strong means finishing strong, and that counts when studying to become an ultrasound tech in California.
1. Do Your Research to Find the Best Ultrasound Technologist School
Research is the best way to start your search for ultrasound schools in your area. Moreover, research will be at the core of all these small steps to finding the best ultrasound education and value for your tuition. Remember, you must approach finding the right ultrasound technician school like it’s your job, at least for a few weeks. It doesn’t have to be a drag or boring. On the contrary, this is a journey to finding a new future in diagnostic healthcare. An exciting journey that will help you become an ultrasound tech and hopefully work in a career you love. Furthermore, if you work hard at the beginning of your search, you won’t be kicking yourself at the end, wondering why you didn’t choose the right ultrasound college.
So where do you start when searching for ultrasound schools? A great place to begin is of course, Google. However, you may want to use all of the tools at your disposal. Sites like Yelp offer a glimpse into what others thought of the ultrasound technology school. Facebook now offers ultrasound school reviews and provides the opportunity to peer into the school’s day-to-day culture. As a matter of fact, social media as a whole has changed the way we do research.
Start by creating a list titled Ultrasound Schools Near Me. List some of the nearby sonography and ultrasound schools and leave room for some notes. Now this may sound like homework, but if you want to become an ultrasound tech…
Get a Feel for the Ultrasound School’s Overall Vibe
The next step is navigating to each of their websites and getting a feel. What is the school’s culture like? Does it look like a canned-website or is there some good information there? Take notes and follow the links to their pages. Is there a common theme? Does the school seem genuine and interested in helping their ultrasound students? Are they more concerned with tuition and numbers instead of your future? Now’s a great opportunity to dig through their site and listen to your intuition. Does the ultrasound school speak to you in any way? Take note of that feeling.
Is the Ultrasound Technologist School Near Me?
Commutes and travel are a couple big concerns for some students. Over the years we’ve seen many from all parts of Southern California. We’ve had students commute from as far out as San Diego, Riverside County, LA County, San Bernardino and the San Fernando Valley in our ultrasound program. Some even relocate because they’re serious about their future in sonography. Are there ultrasound schools closer to their home? Perhaps. But what matters is finding the right school for your needs. For this reason alone, make sure you stretch your search if you’re comfortable with sacrificing some time in your commute.
Follow the Ultrasound Technician School on Social Media & Yelp
These days, most schools, big or small, will have social media and online reviews. You can even probably find the links to them on their sites. That said, take the time to look the school up and see what former and current students are saying about the ultrasound program. Read up on reviews, and check out their images on sites like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr. Furthermore, read the captions, find out what their culture is like and what matters to them.
Lastly, if the school has articles or blogs, take some time to read them. It could give you more insight as to what they expect of students as well as some great life-hacks that may make your life easier while in ultrasound school. Furthermore, their blogs offer a glimpse into upcoming events, how to enroll and more helpful information like healthcare industry insiders. Now that we’ve got a good idea of the best ultrasound schools near you, we can move on to the other steps.
2. Enrolling in Ultrasound Tech School – Ask Questions
The first thing to remember when searching for an ultrasound / vascular technologist school is that you’re in charge of your future. Furthermore, remember that while the best ultrasound schools will want to help you soar towards your goals, ultimately, you’re the one in the cockpit. This means that it’s up to you to do the legwork and learn about the different ultrasound & sonography programs. Moreover, you’ve got to know what makes each one unique and different.
One of the best ways to do this is to ask questions. If the ultrasound technologist school is doing everything right, they’ll be more than happy to answer them. Not only will they want to answer your questions, but they’ll want to go above and beyond to make sure you’re comfortable enrolling. So after you’ve booked a couple appointments to meet with Admissions, take the time to create some questions that matter to you. We’ve created a list of some great things to consider (and ask about) when interviewing ultrasound colleges.
How Long is the Ultrasound Program?
Find out how long the Ultrasound Class runs. Do you have access to a school catalog, class schedule or curriculum that outlines the different modules? Sometimes, these are listed on the ultrasound school’s website as well. Just make sure you’re not going to be spending the next few years in school. While this may sound funny, a good ultrasound tech school will want to help you move quickly to the next step in your career. The last thing you want is to still be in school while others are out looking for their first ultrasound job or earning.
What is the Ultrasound School’s Day-to-Day Culture Like?
You can learn a lot about a school during the visit by taking note of your surroundings. Get a good feel from the Admissions Rep on the ultrasound school’s day-to-day culture and student morale. Do they pack their classes or keep them small? Do they teach hands-on and offer their ultrasound students access to the sonography labs during business hours? Furthermore, what is the faculty like? Do they have real-world, field experience and are they compassionate teachers? While this may not be one of the first things you think about, trust us, it matters. Like we mentioned earlier, it’s the little things that count. Hopefully each of these little steps will help you become an ultrasound tech in 2018.
3. Is the Ultrasound Technology Program All-Inclusive?
This is a big one. When you meet with admissions, ask about included benefits of their ultrasound/vascular technologist program. Find out what makes them unique and why their ultrasound program is better than the one that’s closer to your home.
Some Great Questions to Ask About to Ultrasound Tech Program:
- Are they an ACCSC accredited ultrasound school?
- Is Clinical Internship included in the cost of tuition for ultrasound school?
- Find out how many hours of clinical internship the ultrasound technician school provides
- While you’re at it, ask them why clinical internship is so vital when it comes to career in imaging/scanning
- Does the ultrasound technology school offer financial aid to those that qualify?
- If you’re a US Veteran, find out if they accept the GI Bill for sonography program students
- What about access to the ultrasound lab? Can you use it to practice if you’re a student?
- Little things matter and small costs add up – find out about hidden fees or charges
- Ask if textbooks, scrubs and parking are included in the cost of your ultrasound school tuition
4. It Takes Hard Work to Become an Ultrasound Tech in California
So let’s say you’ve narrowed it down to one school. They’ve got a great feel, an awesome culture and fantastic instructors who care about helping you become an ultrasound tech in 2018. Furthermore, you love the ultrasound school’s curriculum and everything checks out. They’ve got great reviews on Yelp & Facebook, have a good following of dedicated healthcare students and love what they do. Now comes the most important part — your hard work and effort.
Some people believe that because you can enroll in an ultrasound technology school with just your high school diploma, a lot may not be expected of you. Fortunately, this is not true at all. You must remember that you’re going to be the future face of diagnostic healthcare. When you become an ultrasound tech in Orange County or Southern California, you’ll be leading the way for a new group of sonographers that love what they do.
This is going to take some work. Imaging and scanning human bodies requires skill, patience and a good eye for what works. Furthermore, you’ll need to work hard and study in that short time that you’ve got before you start your clinical internship for ultrasound. This means listening to your ultrasound instructor, following the school director’s rules and making sure that you’re focused and absorbing in your ultrasound class each day. In the end, all of the hard work and sacrifice should pay off, but for now, your only job is to stay determined and work hard.
5. Apply Yourself in the Ultrasound Tech Clinical Internship
Clinical internship is a HUGE part of your ultrasound training in California. If you want to become an ultrasound tech, you’ve got to really apply yourself in your school’s clinical internship. While your internship usually takes place during the latter portion of your ultrasound class, you should be keeping it in mind throughout your sonography education. In clinical internship, you’ll be working directly with seasoned ultrasound/vascular techs, medical assistants and clinical staff within a live clinic in Orange County.
Furthermore, you’ll be scanning actual clinic patients while the clinic records the hours you spend there. This is also where some ultrasound classes fail. They may schedule you for 4 or 5 months of clinical internship, but you only get a small number of hours each day. Other schools (and sadly some junior college ultrasound programs) ask you to find your own clinical internship for ultrasound. It’s becoming more common these days, so make sure your school offers clinical internship through their program. Also find out how many hours you get, so you can compare apples to apples when meeting your requirements for the State.
Lastly, remember that you’ve got to be professional. You’ve got to work hard and show the staff at the clinic that you know what you’re doing. All of the imaging and scanning techniques as well as knowledge and professional patient care will slowly start coming back. Remember that this is your chance to shine, and that people are counting on you, most importantly yourself.
Become an Ultrasound Tech at Modern Technology School, Orange County
Modern Technology School is an ACCSC accredited institution and has been teaching Diagnostic Healthcare since 1981. We’ve got one of the most popular Ultrasound Programs in Orange County and Southern California. Our Ultrasound / Vascular Technologist program is all-inclusive and we offer over 1,000+ hours of clinical internship as part of our program. Our clean, safe and friendly ultrasound school is located centrally in Orange County and is accessible by all major freeways.
We teach in small classroom sizes and our dedicated instructors work with students hands-on in real-life ultrasound labs. Financial aid for our ultrasound program is available to those that qualify. We’re also proud to accept the GI Bill for our beloved Veterans. We recently featured two of them (one traveling from as far as San Diego everyday in this recent article). Furthermore, our Orange County Ultrasound School offers free parking with tons of spots and books & scrubs are included as well! We also have dedicated in-house Job Placement Assistance, offering full help with resumes, cover-letters, interview help, and healthcare employer networking events!
Next Ultrasound/Vascular Technician Class Start Dates:
Our next ultrasound class starts January 15th and there’s still time to enroll and get your questions answered today! Our ultrasound/vascular technologist class is very popular here in Orange County and we keep class sizes small so they fill-up fast. We offer free tours of our campus 5-days a week and love meeting students and would love to help you become an ultrasound tech in 2018.
Be sure to check us out on Yelp, and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tumblr today!
Our friendly and helpful Admissions Rep is standing by and ready to answer all of your questions. We want you to be comfortable with taking the next steps in your ultrasound education and look forward to helping you become an ultrasound tech in California. We’re here for you and look forward to meeting you all!