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Medical, Technology Fields Meet In Collin's New Degree

September 26, 2005 -- Collin County Community College District (Collin) is combining the medical and technology fields.

The engineering and emerging technologies division is offering an associate of applied science degree and certificate in biomedical instrumentation electronics. The degree totals 67 hours and the certificate is 30 hours.

Using the training and knowledge from the courses, individuals will be able to repair the different machines and technology used in clinics and hospitals.

Engineering and emerging technologies professor John Wilkins said the degree and certificate grew from a survey in which hospitals and other users of this technology cited a need for individuals with the skills to fix electrocardiogram (EKG), electroencephalogram (EEG), dialysis machines and other equipment.

EKG machines monitor the heart and EEG machines monitor the brain. Doctors and health professionals use these machines to check each organ’s functions and detect any irregularities.

Wilkins said that job opportunities for such individuals include positions with larger hospital systems, instrument manufacturers like General Electric and Philips or work as a third party repairing equipment for clinics.

“(Biomedical technology) is a trend that, as we see our population demographic get older, we will see more of,” Wilkins said. “The demand is constant. There is a career path here.”

Currently, hospitals and other organizations tap former military medical personnel, healthcare employees with an aptitude for technology or electronic engineers in order to fix equipment.

These organizations want to create a skilled set of employees to work on these machines, Wilkins said, and the degree allows individuals the opportunity to switch to regular electronic engineering or other careers in that field.

For more information, call Wilkins at 972.377.1715 or e-mail jwilkins@collin.edu.

Collin County Community College District serves more than 40,000 credit and continuing education students annually and offers more than 100 degree and certificate programs. In addition, Collin is a partner to business, government and industry, providing customized training and work force development.