The National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS) has granted the Medical Laboratory Science (MLS) program at Georgia Southern University Armstrong Campus continuing accreditation for 10 years.
NAACLS is the premier international agency for accreditation and approval of education programs in the clinical laboratory sciences and related health professions. NAACLS accreditation recognizes education programs that meet established education standards in clinical laboratory science disciplines. The University’s MLS program is one of four accredited programs in the state.
“The ASCP is the nationally accepted standard and is the one most sought after. Accreditation by NAACLS means that our program has met academic, professional and clinical standards appropriate for the laboratory profession,” stated Keith Belcher, Ph.D., MLS (ASCP) SM, professor and program director of the Medical Laboratory Science program.
Students who graduate from a NAACLS accredited program are eligible to sit for the American Society for Clinical Pathology Board of Certification Exam (ASCP BOC) and those who do not graduate from a NAACLS accredited program are not eligible to sit for the ASCP BOC and must take an alternate route to be eligible to work. Students must pass ASCP BOC to be eligible to work as a medical laboratory scientist.
Established in 1982, the MLS program is the largest in the state of Georgia in terms of graduating students and is housed in the Waters College of Health Professions. The program provides students with a high quality academic and professional environment that allows for the development of a student’s intellectual and manipulative competencies and attainment of professional values and characteristics.
Keith Belcher, Ph.D., professor and program coordinator of the Medical Laboratory Science program in the Department of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Sciences, was awarded the Laboratory Science Program Director Educational Grant in the amount of $2,500 from the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) Foundation to assist with international collaboration among Georgia Southern University, the Biomedical Sciences program at Linnaeus University, Vaxjo, Sweden and the Medical Laboratory Sciences program at the University of South Bohemia, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic. The purpose of the grant is to provide funds in an effort to support enrichment and travel expenses within the Medical Laboratory Science program.
“Recognizing a need for international collaboration regarding curriculum and clinical practice, the grant will provide funds for faculty travel allowing for the sharing of knowledge to develop an educational curriculum for medical laboratory science programs,” stated Belcher. “The interaction between the three universities will provide an opportunity to assimilate and implement best practices utilizing a global perspective.”
To be eligible for a grant, programs have to be accredited by NAACLS, ABHES or CAAHEP.
In April, Waters College of Health Professions’ faculty in the Department of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Sciences at Georgia Southern University Armstrong Campus had the opportunity to serve as guest speakers at the Georgia Society of Radiologic Technologists (GSRT) Annual Meeting in Jekyll Island, Georgia. Faculty members and their lecture topics included the following:
- The Role of Diagnostic Medical Imaging in Cancer Staging- Laurie Adams, Ed.D., RT(T), radiation therapy clinical coordinator
- Budget Conscious Eating for the Radiology Professional- Shaunell McGee, MHA, RT(R), radiologic sciences bridge program coordinator and instructor and Myka Bussey-Campbell, M.Ed., RDMS, RT(R), diagnostic medical sonography program coordinator
- Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome: A Case Study- Yvonne Dillon, BSRS, RDMS, diagnostic medical sonography clinical coordinator
- Breast Tomosynthesis- Kerry Dunn, M.Ed., RT(R)(M), lecturer
“Our topic, Budget Conscious Eating for the Radiology Professional, was developed into a grant proposal for the Budget Conscious Eating (BCE) service learning opportunity for radiologic students enrolled in DDTS 4020 Leadership and Management,” stated Bussey-Campbell. The topic was selected for a faculty development grant for the 2016-2017 academic year. “McGee and I were first asked to present the outcomes of our pilot grant project to members of the Georgia Educators Association of Radiation and Medical Imaging (GERAMI) and later asked to present at the GSRT Annual Meeting.”
In addition to being a guest lecturer, Dunn currently serves as an officer for GSRT.
Georgia Southern University’s Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Sciences has been ranked one of the best online bachelor’s in radiology technology programs by Best Colleges. Program rankings were based on academic quality, affordability and online competency. Data used was derived from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System and College Navigator.
“Georgia Southern University’s Department of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Sciences (DDTS) offers advancement programs to include the 129 credit hour Radiologic Sciences Bridge program. This program allows working professionals the opportunity to complete a bachelor’s degree while maintaining their family life and full-time work schedule,” stated Douglas Masini, Ed.D, RPFT, RRT-NPS, AE-C, FCCP, FAARC, department chair.
“As coordinator of the online Radiologic Sciences Bridge program, it is vital that the human presence is felt. I am always accessible when students need me. I empathize with life changes and I am always aware of students’ academic standing,” stated Shaunell McGee, MHA RT(R), program coordinator and instructor.
“McGee has crafted a program that offers a Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Sciences with non-clinical and clinical concentrations. Students who are qualified registered technologists in specified areas who choose the clinical concentration may be trained in the areas of CT, MRI and mammography. We are proud of the program’s achievement.”