What are the top brick-and-mortar and online colleges and universities for sonography?
The U.S. News & World Report ranked Oregon Institute of Technology as a top 10 regional school and the third best public school in the nation. It is one of the best colleges for sonography with a completely online program. However, the courses are designed for students who already have an associates degree in sonography.
The Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) is a top choice for students who want to attend college on a campus. US News & World Report ranked RIT as the fourth best value college in the nation, as well as the seventh best northern university. This 4-year undergraduate program emphasizes research and administration as well as sonography basics.
Seattle University is another highly ranked regional and value university by U.S. News & World Report. This college was ranked as the sixth best regional western university, and offers a very competitive bachelors degree in diagnostic ultrasound studies. Students from Seattle University have earned yearly awards Annual Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography for over 20 years.
Although there are not many accredited sonography programs online, due to lack of equipment and internship accessibility, Bellevue College offers an associates degree in diagnostic sonography. This is an excellent online choice since Bellevue College was also ranked as the best online school for student engagement and assessment.
What extracurricular activities should I pursue when I am studying sonography in college?
Some traditional colleges have clubs that are geared towards students who are specifically studying sonography. Lackawanna College in Pennsylvania offers a sonography club to help emotionally support students and provides fundraisers for financial assistance.
It is also a good idea to become an active member of your local chapter of the Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography, as they offer merit based scholarships and educational opportunities for student members.
Other organizations that will help you succeed are The American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography and The American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine, which provide students with relevant and timely information about the changing sonography field.
Some different extracurricular activities that are not as specific to your degree might include fraternities and national health care societies. Being involved in key medical fraternities like Phi Delta Epsilon and Phi Chi will help you network with similar people. These organizations are especially helpful if you are attending a sonography college online, where there are fewer personal interactions with other health care students.
What volunteer opportunities will I have at my brick-and-mortar or online sonography university?
While attending sonography college, you may be required to complete volunteer hours related to your field of study. Even if your school does not require an unpaid internship, you have a better chance of being hired if employers see some relevant work experience on your resume.
Check with the community service department in your local hospitals to get on a volunteer waiting list. Enroll with Volunteermatch to see about private clinics and organizations that are also in need of free labor. This website will match you with prospective volunteer jobs that will give you valuable diagnostic sonography training and help your local community.
You can also find service organizations like Christian Services International or Helping Children Worldwide that may need sonographers to provide international service. If you are an online student, this might be an excellent choice, as some distance learning programs will allow you to continue your studies while volunteering in another country.
Traditional universities can provide excellent volunteer opportunities through student health centers and educational hospitals. Although internships with student health centers are limited, working in a health facility with teaching doctors is very helpful to your studies.
Many colleges have teaching hospitals that also partner with local cardiologists, obstetricians and gastroenterologists. This kind of volunteer work will not only give you insight into professional procedures, but will also help connect you with local physicians in need of sonographers.