May 21, 2009


NACC Offers Career Options in the Health Field

Despite the economic downturn, jobs in the health field are still growing at a fast pace. The world population is growing and aging and there is need for more and better health care. Students with a strong desire to help and/or make a difference in the lives of others should explore all career options in the health field at Northeast Alabama Community College.

Northeast offers many opportunities and programs from which to choose. Advances in technology continue to open up even more career paths. Let one of our faculty advisors help you today to take advantage of all that your community college has to offer in the health care field.

In addition to Nursing (RN), Practical Nursing (PN), and Emergency Medical Services/Paramedic, Northeast offers health field options in:

Dental Aide Liliana Pina
The Dental Aide program at Northeast is designed to guide you in a variety of skills and to provide career pathways into the dental profession. The program is a 12-week course of study which includes classroom instruction and hands-on training. A 27% increase in the number of dental aide positions is expected through 2014. Liliana Pina completed the Dental Aide program at NACC in 2006. She is employed by Dr. Leslie Barrilleaux in Scottsboro. Pina believes that Northeast prepared her well for her current position. “The best thing about attending NACC was that I graduated in a short amount of time, and now I have the right job for me,” she said. “When you do what you really like on your job, you don’t even see it as a job; you see it as your favorite part of the day,” she continued. “NACC gave me the basis for my future.”

Diversified Health Occupations
In today’s economy, having a “Plan B” or something to fall back on is a good idea. This program gives you that “Plan B” as well as “Plans C and D” if you want. Diversified Health Occupations (DHO) is a year long program that will prepare you for an exiting career in the growing health care industry. In fact, this program will not only provide you with the knowledge, skills, and abilities you need to get one type of job, it will provide you with everything you need to get a job in three rapidly growing health care fields. You will receive training in three key areas: EKG/Cardiovascular Technician, Phlebotomy Technician, and Pharmacy Technician. In only one year you can receive training and become eligible for certification in these three areas.

EKG/Cardiovascular Technician
NACC offers a non-credit certificate for EKG/Cardiovascular Technical. This technician performs electrocardiograms (EKGs), administers stress tests, and applies and records Holter monitor results. They assist physicians in diagnosing and treating cardiac (heart) and vascular (blood vessel) ailments. Classes meet one night per week for 12 weeks. A 39% increase in the number of EKG Technicians in Alabama is expected through 2010.

Home Health/Hospice Aide with Certified Nursing Assistant
The Home Health/Hospice Aide program will teach you how to provide basic patient care to homebound and hospice patients under the direction of nursing staff. Duties may include bathing, grooming, and feeding patients, as well as checking vital signs and changing linens. Training at Northeast will prepare you to care for patients at home and in health care facilities. Classes in this accelerated program meet for 24 weeks. Certified nursing assistant is a fundamental part of the training. For those who are current CNAs, the program may be completed in 12 weeks. It is expected that there will be a 48% increase in the number of home health aide positions available in Alabama through 2012.

Medical Assisting
Nicole HicklenThe Medical Assisting program at NACC prepares students for exciting careers in a variety of health care facilities. Graduates of the program are trained to perform both administrative and clinical duties needed for employment in a clinic or physician’s office. NACC is authorized to offer both a short-term certificate and the Associate in Applied Science degree in Medical Assisting. In addition to traditional classroom studies, students are exposed to real-life learning situations through a required preceptorship. A 50% increase is expected in the number of positions available through 2014. Nicole Hicklen, a 2008 Associate Degree graduate of the Medical Assisting program, is a Registered Medical Assistant. She is employed by Dr. Mark Cooper in Scottsboro. Hicklen, a mother of two, held a full-time job while attending Northeast. The convenience of both day and night classes and the location allowed her to continue to work while attending college. “The best thing about Northeast was that it prepared me to enter the workforce with marketable skills,” she said. “The Medical Assisting field is a fast growing occupation,” continued Hicklen. “Be attentive and be willing to open your mind to learn in new ways. Apply yourself and anything is possible.”

Nursing Assistant
The Nursing Assistant program at NACC will prepare you to become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA). This program requires classroom work, lab practice, and an internship. It is a non-credit program. Nursing Assistants held care for individuals confined to hospitals, nursing care facilities, and mental health settings. Persons who are interested in, and suited for, this work should have excellent job opportunities. It is expected that there will be a 21% increase in the number of positions available in Alabama through 2012.

Patient Care Technician
The Patient Care Technician program prepares you for a rewarding career in the health care industry. This certificate provides training and opportunity for certification in Nursing Assistant, EKG/Cardiovascular Technician, and Phlebotomy Technician, as well as general studies in Spanish for Health Care, Math for Health Care, Medical Terminology, and Workplace Readiness. This program gives you multiple pathways to employment in the health care field.

Pharmacy Technician
The Pharmacy Technician program at NACC prepares you for a fast-growing and rewarding career as a pharmacy technician. Pharmacy technicians assist licensed pharmacists in providing medication and other health care products to patients. Technicians are trained to perform routine tasks in preparing prescription medication such as counting tablets and labeling bottles. The course is 8 to 12 weeks with classes meeting one or two nights per week. A 27% increase in the number of positions available through 2012 is expected.

Phlebotomy Technician
Phlebotomy technicians work under the supervision of medical laboratory technologists or laboratory managers and may be employed throughout the health care system. Training includes classroom instruction with clinical studies—experience that places you side-by-side with a seasoned phlebotomist or lab technician for real-life experiences. Classes meet two nights per week for 12 weeks.

For additional information on health career options, call the college or explore this website. Summer Semester Registration is May 29.