EDITORIAL — Wishing luck for our surgical tech students

Published 12:07 am Thursday, September 5, 2019

Happiness, although difficult to define, is the truest measure of success.

That certainly goes for professional success.

But, how do you define professional success?

That comes back to happiness and another question.

Do you live to work or work to live?

Finding something professionally stimulating that isn’t the be-all end-all is important. Many times that comes down to planning and education.

Many fulfilling careers take commitment and schooling. Those who identify what they want and commit to what’s needed to achieve it end up working to live instead of the other way around.

Whether fresh out of high school or looking for a career change later in life, exploring the options presented locally at Lamar State College-Port Arthur is a great place to start.

The Port Arthur News spotlighted the school’s surgical technology program this week, which included school officials boasting about the jobs their graduates were able to secure upon successful program completion.

Surgical Technologist Director Brandon Buckner said the program continually turns out board certified graduates with such a success rate that it recently earned a National Merit Award for achieving a pass rate in the top 10 percent of surgical technology programs in the country.

“This year most of the graduates had a job before they crossed the stage; six at St. Elizabeth (Hospital), three at Baptist (Hospital), one was hired at The Medical Center and one more will be hired there,” he said. “We are a national program and our graduates can go to any state and work.”

College officials stress surgical technicians can easily find work locally or nationally due to high demand in health care, adding the degree can also serve as a springboard to other pursuits.

Graduates have the option to become certified in specialty areas, including work in cardiovascular, dermatology, orthopedics and other fields.

Wages for surgical technicians average approximately $22 per hour, and Buckner said “every hospital in Southeast Texas hires our graduates.”

During a reporter’s recent visit to see the program in action, our readers were introduced to students Brook Cordell, LaPrecious Grant-Moore, Angel Decker, Jazma Johnson and Roslyn Sutton.

It would be great if those first-year students find future homes in the medical field via this exciting pursuit. It is surely rewarding to contribute to the positive medical future of each patient you see.

We wish those students and their faculty leaders good luck as the school year continues.

And, most of all, we hope each student and teacher finds the balance necessary to claim a truly successful career.