On March 14, medical assistant program students in Michelle Galloway’s Radiography I class at Minnesota School of Business-Shakopee had the chance to hear from Nicky Marschinke, a radiography technologist at Allina Health. Nicky visited the class to offer students an inside look into her job and to discuss what someone can expect from a job in the field.
Nicky shared her desire for helping others, something that resonated with students in the class. This is what led Nicky to the field and has kept her passionate about what she does. Throughout her presentation, Nicky focused on three characteristics that make for a successful radiography technologist:
- Passion for helping others. The field is for those who want to make an impact on others lives.
- Enjoy a busy environment. Radiography technologists are up and moving a lot. The field it is not for those who want a “desk job.”
- Flexibility. Each patient has different needs and requires different attention.
Having worked in various clinics, Nicky was able to speak to the differences at each location. From the varying type of equipment used, to the fluctuations in salary, Nicky explained why some radiography technologists prefer a hospital environment versus a clinic. Nicky also discussed that radiography technologists who are interested in specializing have the option to work in a specialty clinic, sharing the example of pediatrics and podiatry.
“The range of career paths available for medical assisting students is vast, so having guest speakers like Nicky who are willing to share their experiences, guidance and recommendations is so important for the students,” Michelle Galloway, medical assisting program chair at Minnesota School of Business-Shakopee, said.
With students learning a variety of equipment in their classes, they had questions for Nicky about what equipment she has used in the field. Nicky discussed the major differences in the digital X-ray prints versus the now less common film X-ray prints, sharing her experience in needing to learn how to operate in a dark room, something the students have not yet done.
Many of the medical assistant program students are still deciding which area they would like to focus on for their career, and Nicky’s presentation offered a glimpse into a viable option.