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The List

The following are links to every Health Career offered @ STCC and collaborating Colleges. Each link will take you to program information and contacts.  There is also an excerpt from the Department of Labor Statistics on the outlook for most careers. For a complete list of all health careers in the United States, see the American Medical Association Health Professions Directory.


Click on the the field for a link to STCC programs or collaborating colleges. 

Biotechnology
Overall employment of science technicians is expected to increase about as fast as the average for all occupations through the year 2010. Continued growth of scientific and medical research, as well as the development and production of technical products, should stimulate demand for science technicians in many industries. In particular, the growing number of agricultural and medicinal products developed from using biotechnology techniques will increase the need for biological technicians. Also, stronger competition among drug companies and an aging population are expected to contribute to the need for innovative and improved drugs, further spurring demand for biological technicians. Fastest employment growth of biological technicians should occur in the drug manufacturing industry and research and testing service firms.

Clinical Lab Science (Medical Technician)
Employment of clinical laboratory workers is expected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations through the year 2010, as the volume of laboratory tests increases with population growth and the development of new types of tests.

Technological advances will continue to have two opposing effects on employment through 2010. New, increasingly powerful diagnostic tests will encourage additional testing and spur employment. On the other hand, research and development efforts targeted at simplifying routine testing procedures may enhance the ability of nonlaboratory personnel, physicians and patients, in particular, to perform tests now done in laboratories.

Although significant, growth will not be the only source of opportunities. As in most occupations, many openings will result from the need to replace workers who transfer to other occupations, retire, or stop working for some other reason. 

Cosmetology  and related services.
Overall employment of barbers, cosmetologists, and other personal appearance workers is projected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations through 2010, because of increasing population, incomes, and demand for cosmetology services. Job opportunities should be favorable, especially because numerous job openings will arise from the need to replace workers who transfer to other occupations, retire, or leave the labor force for other reasons. Competition is expected for jobs and clients at higher paying salons, as applicants vie with a large pool of licensed and experienced cosmetologists for these positions. The number of self-employed, booth-renting cosmetologists should continue to grow. Opportunities will be better for those licensed to provide a broad range of services.

Cosmetology graduates show off their new "doo."Employment trends are expected to vary among the different specialties within this grouping. For example, employment of barbers is expected to decline, due to a large number of retirements and the relatively small number of cosmetology school graduates opting to obtain barbering licenses. Employment of hairdressers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists should grow about as fast as average, because of continuing demand for coloring services and other hair treatments, such as perms and waves, by teens and aging baby boomers.

Rapid growth in the number of nail salons and full-service, day spas will generate numerous job openings for other personal appearance workers. Nail salons specialize in providing manicures and pedicures. Day spas typically provide a full range of services, including beauty wraps, manicures and pedicures, facials, and massages. Employment of manicurists and pedicurists is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations, while skin care specialists and shampooers should expect average employment growth.

Dental Assisting
Job prospects for dental assistants should be good. Employment is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through the year 2010. In addition, numerous job openings will occur due to the need to replace assistants who transfer to other occupations, retire, or leave the labor force for other reasons. Many opportunities are for entry-level positions offering on-the-job training.

Population growth and greater retention of natural teeth by middle-aged and older people will fuel demand for dental services. Older dentists, who are less likely to employ assistants, will leave and be replaced by recent graduates, who are more likely to use one, or even two. In addition, as dentists' workloads increase, they are expected to hire more assistants to perform routine tasks, so that they may devote their own time to more profitable procedures.

Dental Hygiene
Employment of dental hygienists is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through 2010, in response to increasing demand for dental care and the greater substitution of the services of hygienists for those previously performed by dentists. Job prospects are expected to remain very good unless the number of dental hygienist program graduates grows much faster than during the last decade, and results in a much larger pool of qualified applicants.

Population growth and greater retention of natural teeth will stimulate demand for dental hygienists. Older dentists, who are less likely to employ dental hygienists, will leave and be replaced by recent graduates, who are more likely to do so. In addition, as dentists' workloads increase, they are expected to hire more hygienists to perform preventive dental care such as cleaning, so that they may devote their own time to more profitable procedures.

Drug & Alcohol Rehab (Available through Asnuntuck Community College, Enfield, CT. )

EMT/Paramedic (NEW at STCC)
Employment of emergency medical technicians and paramedics is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2010. Population growth and urbanization will increase the demand for full-time paid EMTs and paramedics rather than for volunteers. In addition, a large segment of the population—the aging baby boomers—will further spur demand for EMT services, as they become more likely to have medical emergencies. There will still be demand for part-time, volunteer EMTs and paramedics in rural areas and smaller metropolitan areas. In addition to job growth, openings will occur because of replacement needs; some workers leave because of stressful working conditions, limited advancement potential, and the modest pay and benefits in the private sector.

Most opportunities for EMTs and paramedics are expected to arise in hospitals and private ambulance services. Competition will be greater for jobs in local government, including fire, police, and independent third service rescue squad departments, where salaries and benefits tend to be slightly better. Opportunities will be best for those who have advanced certifications, such as EMT-Intermediate and EMT-Paramedic, as clients and patients demand higher levels of care before arriving at the hospital.

Gerontology  (Available through Asnuntuck Community College, Enfield, CT. )

Human Services  and Human Services Management  (Available through Asnuntuck Community College, Enfield, CT. )

Massage Therapy
Massage customers for hygienic or remedial purposes.

  • 2000 employment: 34,000
  • Projected 2000-10 employment change: Faster than average

Medical Assisting  (Certificate and Associate Degree available)
Employment of medical assistants is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through the year 2010 as the health services industry expands because of technological advances in medicine, and a growing and aging population. It is one of the fastest growing occupations.

Employment growth will be driven by the increase in the number of group practices, clinics, and other healthcare facilities that need a high proportion of support personnel, particularly the flexible medical assistant who can handle both administrative and clinical duties. Medical assistants primarily work in outpatient settings, where much faster than average growth is expected.

In view of the preference of many health care employers for trained personnel, job prospects should be best for medical assistants with formal training or experience, particularly those with certification.

Medical Coding and Billing Specialist
Job prospects for formally trained technicians should be very good. Employment of medical records and health information technicians is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through 2010, due to rapid growth in the number of medical tests, treatments, and procedures which will be increasingly scrutinized by third-party payers, regulators, courts, and consumers.

Hospitals will continue to employ a large percentage of health information technicians, but growth will not be as fast as in other areas. Increasing demand for detailed records in offices and clinics of physicians should result in fast employment growth, especially in large group practices. Rapid growth is also expected in nursing homes and home health agencies

Medical Office Information Technology

Medical Imaging / Nuclear Medicine
Employment of nuclear medicine technologists is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through the year 2010. The number of openings each year will be very low because the occupation is small. Growth will arise from an increase in the number of middle-aged and older persons who are the primary users of diagnostic procedures, including nuclear medicine tests.

Technological innovations may increase the diagnostic uses of nuclear medicine. One example is the use of radiopharmaceuticals in combination with monoclonal antibodies to detect cancer at far earlier stages than is customary today, and without resorting to surgery. Another is the use of radionuclides to examine the heart's ability to pump blood. Wider use of nuclear medical imaging to observe metabolic and biochemical changes for neurology, cardiology, and oncology procedures, also will spur some demand for nuclear medicine technologists.

On the other hand, cost considerations will affect the speed with which new applications of nuclear medicine grow. Some promising nuclear medicine procedures, such as positron emission tomography (PET), are extremely costly, and hospitals contemplating them will have to consider equipment costs, reimbursement policies, and the number of potential users. 

Medical Imaging / Radiography (X-Ray) 
Employment of radiologic technologists and technicians is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2010, as the population grows and ages, increasing the demand for diagnostic imaging. Opportunities are expected to be favorable. Some employers report shortages of radiologic technologists and technicians. Imbalances between the supply of qualified workers and demand should spur efforts to attract and retain qualified radiologic technologists and technicians. For example, employers may provide more flexible training programs, or improve compensation and working conditions.

Medical Imaging includes X-ray, nuclear medicine and sonographyAlthough physicians are enthusiastic about the clinical benefits of new technologies, the extent to which they are adopted depends largely on cost and reimbursement considerations. For example, digital imaging technology can improve quality and efficiency, but remains expensive. Some promising new technologies may not come into widespread use because they are too expensive and third-party payers may not be willing to pay for their use.

Radiologic technologists who are educated and credentialed in more than one type of diagnostic imaging technology, such as radiography and sonography or nuclear medicine, will have better employment opportunities as employers look for new ways to control costs. In hospitals, multi-skilled employees will be the most sought after, as hospitals respond to cost pressures by continuing to merge departments.

Hospitals will remain the principal employer of radiologic technologists and technicians. However, a greater number of new jobs will be found in offices and clinics of physicians, including diagnostic imaging centers. Health facilities such as these are expected to grow very rapidly through 2010 due to the strong shift toward outpatient care, encouraged by third-party payers and made possible by technological advances that permit more procedures to be performed outside the hospital. Some job openings will also arise from the need to replace technologists and technicians who leave the occupation.

Medical Imaging / Disgnostic Medical Sonography (Ultrasound)
Employment of diagnostic medical sonographers is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2010 as the population grows and ages, increasing the demand for diagnostic imaging and therapeutic technology. Some job openings also will arise from the need to replace sonographers who leave the occupation.

Ultrasound is becoming an increasingly attractive alternative to radiologic procedures as patients seek safer treatment methods. Because ultrasound—unlike most diagnostic imaging methods—does not involve radiation, harmful side effects and complications from repeated use are rarer for both the patient and the sonographer. Sonographic technology is expected to evolve rapidly and to spawn many new ultrasound procedures, such as 3D-ultrasonography for use in obstetric and ophthalmologic diagnosis. However, high costs may limit the rate at which some promising new technologies are adopted.

Hospitals will remain the principal employer of diagnostic medical sonographers. However, employment is expected to grow more rapidly in offices and clinics of physicians, including diagnostic imaging centers. Health facilities such as these are expected to grow very rapidly through 2010 due to the strong shift toward outpatient care, encouraged by third-party payers and made possible by technological advances that permit more procedures to be performed outside the hospital.

Nursing (ASN)  
Job opportunities for RNs are expected to be very good. Employment of registered nurses is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2010, and because the occupation is very large, many new jobs will result. Thousands of job openings also will result from the need to replace experienced nurses who leave the occupation, especially as the median age of the registered nurse population continues to rise.

Some States report current and projected shortages of RNs, primarily due to an aging RN workforce and recent declines in nursing school enrollments. Imbalances between the supply of and demand for qualified workers should spur efforts to attract and retain qualified RNs. For example, employers may restructure workloads, improve compensation and working conditions, and subsidize training or continuing education.

Faster than average growth will be driven by technological advances in patient care, which permit a greater number of medical problems to be treated, and an increasing emphasis on preventive care. In addition, the number of older people, who are much more likely than younger people to need nursing care, is projected to grow rapidly.

Employment in hospitals, the largest sector, is expected to grow more slowly than in other healthcare sectors. While the intensity of nursing care is likely to increase, requiring more nurses per patient, the number of inpatients (those who remain in the hospital for more than 24 hours) is not likely to increase much. Patients are being discharged earlier and more procedures are being done on an outpatient basis, both in and outside hospitals. However, rapid growth is expected in hospital outpatient facilities, such as those providing same-day surgery, rehabilitation, and chemotherapy.

Employment in home healthcare is expected to grow rapidly. This is in response to the growing number of older persons with functional disabilities, consumer preference for care in the home, and technological advances that make it possible to bring increasingly complex treatments into the home. The type of care demanded will require nurses who are able to perform complex procedures.

Employment in nursing homes is expected to grow faster than average due to increases in the number of elderly, many of whom require long-term care. In addition, the financial pressure on hospitals to discharge patients as soon as possible should produce more nursing home admissions. Growth in units that provide specialized long-term rehabilitation for stroke and head injury patients or that treat Alzheimer's victims also will increase employment.

An increasing proportion of sophisticated procedures, which once were performed only in hospitals, are being performed in physicians' offices and clinics, including ambulatory surgicenters and emergency medical centers. Accordingly, employment is expected to grow faster than average in these places as healthcare in general expands.

In evolving integrated health care networks, nurses may rotate among employment settings. Because jobs in traditional hospital nursing positions are no longer the only option, RNs will need to be flexible. Opportunities should be excellent, particularly for nurses with advanced education and training. 

Occupational Therapy Assistant
HOT JOB

Occupational Therapy
Employment of occupational therapist assistants and aides is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through 2010. Federal legislation imposing limits on reimbursement for therapy services may adversely affect the job market for occupational therapist assistants and aides in the near term. However, over the long run, demand for occupational therapist assistants and aides will continue to rise, with growth in the number of individuals with disabilities or limited function. Growth will result from an increasing population in older age groups, including the baby-boom generation, which increasingly needs occupational therapy services as they become older. Demand also will result from advances in medicine that allow more people with critical problems to survive and then need rehabilitative therapy. Third-party payers, concerned with rising health care costs may begin to encourage occupational therapists to delegate more of the hands-on therapy work to occupational therapist assistants and aides. By having assistants and aides work more closely with clients under the guidance of a therapist, the cost of therapy should be more modest than otherwise.

Physical Therapy   (Available through Springfield College)

Physical Therapist Assistant
Employment of physical therapist assistants and aides is expected to grow much faster than the average through the year 2010. Federal legislation imposing limits on reimbursement for therapy services may adversely affect the job market for physical therapist assistants and aides in the near term. However, over the long run, demand for physical therapist assistants and aides will continue to rise, with growth in the number of individuals with disabilities or limited function. The rapidly growing elderly population is particularly vulnerable to chronic and debilitating conditions that require therapeutic services. These patients often need additional assistance in their treatment, making the roles of assistants and aides vital. The large baby-boom generation is entering the prime age for heart attacks and strokes, further increasing the demand for cardiac and physical rehabilitation. Additionally, future medical developments should permit an increased percentage of trauma victims to survive, creating added demand for therapy services.

Licensed physical therapist assistants can enhance the cost-effective provision of physical therapy services. Once a patient is evaluated, and a treatment plan is designed by the physical therapist, the physical therapist assistant can provide many aspects of treatment, as prescribed by the therapist. 

Physician Assistant ( Springfield College)
Employment opportunities are expected to be good for physician assistants, particularly in areas or settings that have difficulty attracting physicians, such as rural and inner city clinics. Employment of PAs is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through the year 2010 due to anticipated expansion of the health services industry and an emphasis on cost containment.

Physicians and institutions are expected to employ more PAs to provide primary care and to assist with medical and surgical procedures because PAs are cost-effective and productive members of the healthcare team. Physician assistants can relieve physicians of routine duties and procedures. Telemedicine—using technology to facilitate interactive consultations between physicians and physician assistants—also will expand the use of physician assistants.

Besides the traditional office-based setting, PAs should find a growing number of jobs in institutional settings such as hospitals, academic medical centers, public clinics, and prisons. Additional PAs may be needed to augment medical staffing in inpatient teaching hospital settings if the number of physician residents is reduced. In addition, State-imposed legal limitations on the numbers of hours worked by physician residents are increasingly common and encourage hospitals to use PAs to supply some physician resident services. Opportunities will be best in States that allow PAs a wider scope of practice.

Respiratory Care
Job opportunities are expected to remain good. Employment of respiratory therapists is expected to increase faster than the average for all occupations through the year 2010, because of substantial growth of the middle-aged and elderly population—a development that will heighten the incidence of cardiopulmonary disease.

Older Americans suffer most from respiratory ailments and cardiopulmonary diseases such as pneumonia, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, and heart disease. As their numbers increase, the need for respiratory therapists will increase, as well. In addition, advances in treating victims of heart attacks, accident victims, and premature infants (many of whom are dependent on a ventilator during part of their treatment) will increase the demand for the services of respiratory care practitioners.

Opportunities are expected to be favorable for respiratory therapists with cardiopulmonary care skills and experience working with infants.

Although hospitals will continue to employ the vast majority of therapists, a growing number of therapists can expect to work outside of hospitals in respiratory therapy clinics, offices of physicians, nursing homes, or homecare. 

Surgical Technologist
HOT JOB

Employment of surgical technologists is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through the year 2010 as the volume of surgery increases. The number of surgical procedures is expected to rise as the population grows and ages. As the "baby boom" generation enters retirement age, the over 50 population will account for a larger portion of the general population. Older people require more surgical procedures. Technological advances, such as fiber optics and laser technology, will also permit new surgical procedures to be performed.

Hospitals will continue to be the primary employer of surgical technologists, although much faster employment growth is expected in offices and clinics of physicians, including ambulatory surgical centers.

Mass. Community College Health Programs 
  
List of all health offerings | Advising information

The Asnuntuck-STCC Health Connection
  
Health programs for both colleges

Did not see what you were looking for?  Try: www.bls.gov/

Margaret-Ann Azzaro R.N., ADN, BSN, M.Ed.

Margaret-Ann Azzaro R.N., ADN, BSN, M.Ed.

Graduated from: STCC in 1994 (Associateís degree)
Umass in 1996 (Bachelorís degree)
Quinnipiac University in 2000 (Masterís degree)
Currently working as a clinical nurse specialist at Mercy

STCC Department of Nursing offers an extremely challenging and comprehensive nursing education. The instructors offer a wealth of professional knowledge and experience. The education is superior and provides the student with a strong foundation with which to grow both personally and professionally. The benefit to obtaining an associate degree in nursing at STCC is that you can graduate, obtain your RN license and begin working in the field while pursuing an advanced degree. Honestly, I canít say enough about the STCC nursing program and how it has helped to shape my career as a registered nurse.

School of Continuing Education
SCE offers many of the general education courses required for Health Careers.
On Line Education
For highly motivated students who have difficulty with fitting day courses into their schedule.

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