Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Even Medical Tech Types Can't Find Entry-Level Jobs (the Higher Education Scam Continues)

I'm sitting in a hospital waiting room with my laptop where I have just stumbled across an industry journal for surgical technologists.  I don't know much about this field, so I quickly browsed through it and came across a short op-ed written by a newly-minted surgical tech lamenting the difficulty she is having finding an entry-level job.  This is interesting because according to current conventional wisdom, jobs in health care are supposed to be abundant.  (I'm under the impression that surgical techs assist surgeons in the operating room.)

The short article is titled, "In Search of that Perfect (Any) Job" by Sharon Goff, CST, published in the April 2011 edition of The Surgical Technologist.  She wrote that she is a mother in her forties who graduated with honors with an associates degree.  Here are three quotes:

Despite it all, I had no job.  As a matter of fact, only two girls out of my graduating class have gotten a job.
I have visited many online surgical technology forums and seen the disappointment and anger from techs all over the country experiencing the same thing.
I quit visiting the forums after that because they are too depressing.  Shattered dreams, mounting debt, many feeling lied to or manipulated by the schools they attended.
Presumably, thousands of unemployed and underemployed people have invested time and money retraining and re-educating for medical support fields.  It all sounds like another instance of for-profit (and even public) colleges raking in the dough by making false promises.

In the meantime, as Americans' aggregate student loan debt reaches record levels (daily?), the media and our government will continue to promote the higher education scam.  For example:  Ohio Universities Told to Develop 3-Year Degrees so that higher education is more accessible to people, allowing them to become "productive members of society" with solid middle class jobs.  Of course, our politicians and media commentators completely fail to realize that increasing the number of college graduates will not magically increase the number of middle class jobs, just the number of rightfully angry unemployed and underemployed people with student loan debt.

12 comments:

Nando said...

At least, we will have a large segment of highly-educated, debt-soaked, pissed off members of the working class. My concern is that academics tend to be pussies who will not take a stand.

The fact is we are producing far too many college graduates, of all disciplines. It is unsustainable. If nothing drastic occurs soon, we will start seeing $12 an hour telemarketer/CSR jobs that require an MBA.

Anonymous said...

Clearly many fields are impacted, but my feeling is these med techs haven't seen anything until they've tried to secure a legal job. I could pay for an associate's degree with pocket money. Now try paying off $150,000 with no job.

Yes, this is a scam. There are too many people with their hands in the cookie jar to have any significant changes. People are getting rich off the backs of indebted, uninformed, dare I say ignorant students overpaying for their educations. Listen dumb-asses, if you attend undergrad and major in some b.s. humanities major, e.g., poly sci, philosophy, woman's studies, etc., you have no sympathy from me. You might wear a beret, impress 18-year old women with your understanding of Kant and Yeats, but you will be hard pressed to find a job. Good luck suckers.

Anonymous said...

I find it rather ironic that many people who are in deep consumer debt have little or no sympathy for student debtors. What, may I ask, is the difference exactly? I don't believe there is one. Most people want to pay their debts. But the interest rate and size of the debt make that impossible if you owe more than 50k+ these days.

I don't believe that it matters what your B.A is in honestly. Unless you are planning to go into a technical field of course. If you want to learn about Kant or African fertility shrine history it really is irrelevant when you simply want to be a claims adjuster. Any B.A will do.

Anonymous said...

We have become a country in which its citizens are worth nothing more than the amount of money someone can get out of them. There is less than a decade left. Après moi le déluge.

Anonymous said...

The interest rates are absurd. They're going to be about 7%. Usually more, used to be 8.5% on the biggest ones, now it's ONLY 7.9%.

Try finding that ROR on any investment. You don't get it in stocks, you don't get it from bonds. You don't get it from hedge funds either, most of those collapse.

This "investment" has a higher rate of return than any other possible way to make money and has ZERO risk. You pick the wrong hedge fund, stocks or bonds and you lose your entire investment. Although I guess the rich manage to even avoid that, at least in terms of Madoff and the bailouts.

But screw over students and somehow they all deserved it, and you deserve to get richer. Since you're rich, you "worked harder" and "deserve" all the money you made off of all the people you suckered.

This country is an absolute joke. A total complete joke.

Anonymous said...

Why don't we look into eliminating some of the unnecessary requirements that colleges impose upon students? My undergraduate had a 125 hour rule. Some of the electives I had to sign up for in order to get my 125 hours were useless.

A friend attends a community college in Florida. She is required to take P.E. and a music class.

Anonymous said...

Much of these med-tech degrees by private for-profit institutions are worthless scams.

My wife looked into becoming a radiation technician. One option was to apply to a program at a local hospital. It was extremely competitive to get into, with only 8 slots. You worked all day, five days per week for a one. Mornings were coursework, afternoons clinicals. I think the total tuition was 4 or 8 grand.

Those 8 people would get jobs, no problem

The other alternative were one of these private for-profit schools. They take all comers and charge $20k+. You do only book work for a year.

Here's the problem--to actually get a job as a radiation tech, you need a certain certification. That certification requires 1000 hours of clinicals. Guess what, the for-profit school doesn't get you clinical hours.

Instead, you are on your own to get clinical hours. Without certification, you are basically not much better than a person off the street in terms of pay...maybe 10-12/hr. Not the 30-50/hr quoted for experienced rad-techs.

The whole for-profit tech training thing is a scam.

Anonymous said...

One "year" you'd do the hospital training.

Liz said...

As soon as I saw all the beat-the-recession-with-retraining articles promoting jobs, jobs, jobs in health care, I just KNEW this was the case. It's so sad.

Anonymous said...

Blame the education cartel for this.

THey promise you the moon; this is worse than listening to a used car salesman.:(

American trained nurses cannot find jobs, either. Nor can any allied health grads, be they new grads or seasoned professionals.

Hospitals in our area are closing. Blame that on charity care; the state can no longer to afford to foot the bill.

Yet proprietary schools are popping up and their classes are full to the brim; so are local hospital based nursing schools and other allied health schools run by hospitals.

Pretty soon we'll have a college on every corner of every town.

These schools cost a fortune. One brand new proprietary "college" wants 8grand a semester for a 2 year nursing program!

And they can charge that kind of money because they can....and they know full well everybody's got tuition assistance. They get their money....and you get stuck holding the bag when you cannot find a job as a nurse.

Meanwhile you have a nice fat tuition assistance bill that needs to be paid off. How do you do that when you can't find a job?

There are also proprietary schools that train phlebotomists, medical assistants and other low level health field jobs. You're trained for jobs that simply do not exiswt.

Re: the phlebotomy schools -- I am an old school medical technologist and in our day, it took you a month tops to learn how to "Stick." You learned at the med tech school(run by hospitals; accredited by NAACLS) when you went on rounds on patient floors, accompanied by another tech or phlebotomist who showed you how to draw blood.

No certs or license was needed. Now they're whining away you need certification before they can hire you. Not necessary and not needed. take it from me. It's a money making scheme.

No jobs?

What we need to do:
Send back the visaed nurses and other allied health professionals. You'll see plenty of jobs for our allied health people.

Unknown said...

Pursuing a health career as a medical assistant offers a wide variety of educational and training options. It is not completely necessary to become certified or earn a degree before becoming a medical assistant. There are still many medical assistants today that are still trained while on the job, all that is required in most cases is a high school diploma or the equivalent.medical assistant technical schooling

Anonymous said...

The problem is that many jobs are outsourced now, including legal work.

Also, many highly skilled college graduates find their jobs have been taken by people from other countries with H1-B visas. I would go so far as to say that H1-B visa holders get preferential hiring.

People are scrambling to get any kind of work they can now, and going back to school to change careers. The registered nurse program at my local college, has over 500 applicants for only 30 slots. And there is no real nursing shortage in my area. However, they will only owe about 20 grand after finishing nursing school.

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