The University of Rio Grande and Rio Grande Community College recognized their 2017 Diagnostic Medical Sonography graduates with a pinning ceremony Friday, August 4. Stephanie Saunders, DMS Program Director, said the students have worked hard throughout the year to succeed in the program.
“These students have spent the last 15 months putting in intensive hours of studying and clinicals. They have had an exceptional level of dedication to the program,” Saunders said. “I’m so proud of their accomplishments and wish them the best of luck for their futures.”
The DMS program consists of two majors, Cardiovascular Sonography and General Sonography. The majors lead to an Associate of Applied Science Degree, and students who complete both receive a bachelor’s degree in the program. Saunders said the ceremony signifies the students have successfully fulfilled the requirements of either the cardiovascular or general DMS programs.
“Our students are able to complete the associate degree program within two years and immediately get into a career with a good salary, employee benefits and job security within our area,” Saunders said. “Our goal is to provide the students with high quality education and clinical training so they will be prepared to enter the workforce as professional sonographers.”
Rio’s general and cardiovascular DMS programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs. Saunders said she believes it is important for Rio to provide quality DMS education in the local region to continue making healthcare easily accessible to the community.
“Having an ultrasound program at Rio that is accredited so that our students can be board eligible upon graduation is a great opportunity. This means our students are ready for the workforce and are employable upon graduation,” Saunders said. “Many of our students come from our four-county district and stay within the region upon graduation. Because of this, we are helping deliver high quality healthcare services to our communities through our graduates.”
The graduates for the 2017 year who received their degrees in General Sonography are Danielle Clark, Anna Currey, Rebecca Dille, Genet Haile, Andrea Hunt, Julia Lantz, Alissa Lindsey, Taylor McIlwain, Danielle Sherman, Allie Short and Kelli Sloan.
The graduates who received their degrees in Cardiovascular Sonography are Hannah Forester, Zachary Henault, Kyra Howell, Madison Lee, Lauren Mitchell, Morgan Nottingham, Rachel Payne, Danika Rinehart and Cole Williams.
Award winners for the Class of 2017 are Allie Short, Clinical Excellence in General Sonography; Danika Rinehart, Clinical Excellence in Cardiovascular Sonography; Danielle Sherman, Clinical Improvement in General Sonography; Kyra Howell, Clinical Improvement in Cardiovascular Sonography; and Lauren Mitchell and Andrea Hunt, Excellence in Multi-Specialty Sonography.