Health & Wellness
- Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counseling
- Bachelor of Applied Science: HSM
- Emergency Medical Services
- Health Information Management
- Kinesiology / Physical Education
- Massage Therapy
- Nursing Programs
- Optical Assistant (CE)
- Pharmacy Technician (CE)
- Phlebotomy (CE)
- Respiratory Care
There are so many opportunities at Midland College! Nursing (RN), Licensed Vocational Nursing (LVN), Respiratory Therapy, Sonography (Ultrasound), Emergency Medical Services (EMT and Paramedic), Nurse Aide (CNA), Pharmacy Technician, Phlebotomy, Massage Therapy, Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counseling, Health Information Management, Optical Assistant, Pharmacy Technician.
There are definitely certain requirements. Most of these programs require CPR certification, a criminal background check, and certain immunizations. Many require certain prerequisite classes such as Anatomy and Physiology, English, Psychology, or Medical terminology. Some also require a specialized test called the TEAS (Test of Essential Academic Skills). Graduates of high schools outside the United States take the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language). The good news is that all of these requirements (except for the immunizations) are offered here at Midland College or online. It’s easy to find this info in the Health & Wellness section of the MC website - the page you're on now. Click on the program you are interested in, scroll down, and click on Admission Requirements and/or Prerequisites. It’s all spelled out there.
There was a community needs assessment done last year for this area, and RN nursing and LVN ranked very high. Between Midland and Odessa, there were over 200 jobs posted that needed to be filled. But workers in any of the healthcare areas we’ve discussed rarely ever have a hard time finding a job. Rural areas have a very high need too.
Do healthcare workers ever get laid off, and is the healthcare profession a "recession proof" industry?
It can happen, but it’s rare. Honestly, I’ve been a little jealous of my friends in the oil and gas industry over the years who seem to be making way more money than I and have vacation homes, etc. But when oil drops, I’m not jealous any more. They go through a lot of stress with transfers and layoffs, etc. I know that I will never have to go without a job in nursing. As I’m sure you’ve seen since the start of the Coronavirus, the demand for healthcare workers has skyrocketed. Staffing companies are even offering up to $10,000 per week for providers to travel to desperate parts of the U.S. to help out.
Is healthcare a good field for working parents? For people whose first language is not English? For workers who are disabled?
Healthcare is a good field for working parents because it’s so stable and there are all different types of opportunities. One drawback though is that you might have to work weird hours, nights, weekends, holidays, etc. because the need to take care of patients never stops. The trick is to find a job that meets your personal and family needs. There are so many settings to work in…hospitals, clinics, schools, fire/ambulance companies, nursing homes, home healthcare agencies, surgery centers, the military, businesses such as oil companies, and even from home. All of these offer different working hours, so you would need to find the job that works best for you. I’ve changed jobs many times to work around my family’s needs. Another positive is that the salary is usually good and can even be great depending on what you go into. You can google topics such as “average pay for healthcare jobs” and find all kinds of info about how much you can make. People with disabilities and whose first language is not English might find it more challenging to find a job that meets their needs, but it can be done. Knowing a second language is usually even a plus. There’s practically something for everyone in healthcare.
All of the types of workers we’ve discussed will be needed, along with physicians, physician assistants, physical therapists, social workers and occupational therapists.
Of course there are tons of technical skills that you will need to learn in school and on the job for your chosen field, but employers will also look for other things: interpersonal skills, the ability to communicate, teamwork, positive attitude, leadership, problem solving, the desire to care for others, a good work ethic, professionalism, honesty, flexibility, and patience. If you are feeling drawn to the medical field, there’s a good chance that you already have these characteristics!
It is and it isn’t. If you watch tv with a healthcare provider, you’ll see us yell at TV, “That’s not really how it happens!” In real life things move slower and there can be more problems. For instance, if you binge Grey’s Anatomy, they say “We need a chest tube!” Five seconds later, the chest tube is in. But the shows do give you an idea of what goes on in real life, and what the environment might be like, including the drama.
I don’t like being around blood, and I’m not very good with sick people. Are there health careers that don’t involve direct patient care?
Yes there are. One program we offer at MC is the Health Information Management degree. With that degree, you can do things such as being a biller, a coder, a patient care coordinator, file insurance claims, coordinate benefits and patient care … sometimes from the comfort of your own home! If it’s blood you’re uncomfortable with, the Sonography program might be a good fit. Most patients are not bleeding during their ultrasounds.
There are some for sure. This Covid-19 crisis has probably made you aware of them. You risk being exposed to disease-causing agents such as viruses and bacteria … things that could cause you to get a disease such as hepatitis, flu, HIV/AIDS, and even the Coronavirus. There are also physical hazards such as hurting your back and on-the-job injuries. Sometimes the patients themselves can become aggressive or violent. Thankfully, you should learn in school and in your on-the-job training how to handle a lot of these issues. You’ve probably already learned a lot about PPE over the past six weeks! Finally, another thing that healthcare workers face can is high levels of stress and even burnout. Can you imagine how the nurses and respiratory therapists in New York must feel these days?
Most things are computer-based these days, so having computer skills is a plus for sure.
It’s a super cool place to work! We use technology and very high-tech mannequins - or manikins - to teach students how to become excellent healthcare providers. We have dozens of mannequins, from babies to adults, that are very realistic. Some of them blink, breathe, talk, groan, cry, throw up, and have pulses. You can start IV’s on them, place tubes and drains, give them medications, perform CPR, and shock them with the defibrillator. They talk back to you and act as a real live patient would. Students provide them care and get to see the results of their care without anyone ever being hurt. For instance, would you rather get a shot from a nurse who has given only one or one hundred? This is the place where healthcare providers get to improve all of their skills and practice a lot before providing care to live patients. Plus, who wouldn’t want to work around zombies all day?
Honestly, it wasn’t my first choice. After high school, I started out at the local community college. I was working two jobs to pay for a new sports car I just had to have (very dumb move) and literally failed out of school. I dropped out (because I lost my scholarship) and worked for a few years. When the time was right, I decided to go back to school to become an accountant. Because of my terrible GPA, I didn’t get accepted into the accounting program, but I did get waitlisted for nursing, which was my second choice. I got in and made it through school still a little uncertain if I was actually going to like it. Truthfully, I only stuck with it because I was getting older and needed to finally get on with a better career. But once I graduated and started working, I loved it. I mean, I think it would be more fun to be a Broadway performer, but since I can’t act, dance, or sing, and I don’t love getting up in front of people, nursing has been a great option for me. I’ve worked about ten different jobs, all of which suited my needs at the time and all of which I’ve enjoyed. I’ve had the satisfaction of helping others and have made a good living for my family. Nursing has been an amazing career for me, and I’ve never regretted it for a second.
Midland College has many programs and options for our students. If you are investigating the opportunities we offer, our Welcome Center is the perfect place to receive general information.
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Thank you for choosing Midland College! Whether you are here to earn a few credits, take courses to transfer or start a new career, we welcome you.