You’ve made up your mind…a future career in healthcare is the path for you. With so many programs and schools available, what factors should you consider when searching for a healthcare school to call home? Making a change and going back to school can be a very exciting time in your life, but can also be a challenge.
The best way to ensure you’ve made the best decision for you is to conduct research and do your “homework” when selecting a school. When you consider the cost, time and effort that will be required to graduate with a degree or a diploma, the selection you make is extremely important.
What type of healthcare career do you want? Depending on what career path you ultimately want to follow, you will need to find a school that offers that program or degree. Are you interested in a healthcare career that provides direct patient care such as Medical Assisting, Dental Assisting, Pharmacy Technician, Massage Therapy or Nursing? Perhaps a healthcare career that has the option of a “behind the scenes” work environment such as a Health Information Technician, is more your style.
What is your budget for tuition? Varying programs and degrees often have different tuition costs depending on popularity of the program, total credit hours for program completion (degree vs. diploma) and additional laboratory fees or special use fees, to name a few. Depending on your financial situation, you may qualify for loans and grants that might ease the financial aspect of going back to school. Whichever school you are considering, make sure to schedule an appointment with a Financial Aid Officer to get an estimate of the total cost for your program.
Is the school accredited? Accreditation is a process of validation and evaluation by a third party that a school pursues in order to offer higher education to the public. Accreditation is important because it demonstrates the school’s ability to meet or exceed a specific set of strict expectations and outcomes from the programs that it offers. If a school is not accredited, it may limit your ability to gain access to financial aid for tuition. When applying for your future career, employers may investigate whether an applicant’s diploma or degree was obtained from an accredited school.
Tour the school! Schedule an appointment, meet with an Admissions Advisor, and TOUR the school! What vibe do you get from staff, faculty and current students? Does it look like a place that you would like to call “home” for the next several months of your life? Do you think this school and program would be a good investment for your future?
Going through the process of selecting a school may seem stressful. But, if you do your “homework” and ask a support person (relative or friend that you trust) to attend your appointment and tour with you, selecting the appropriate school for you will be a life-changing event. Arizona College has staff and faculty that want to help you change your life and start your path to a rewarding healthcare career. Contact us today to schedule a tour of our modern facilities and medical laboratories at our Glendale or Mesa Campus. Change lives, choose Arizona College!