Program has apprenticeship affiliations with top healthcare systems so you can earn while you learn
To help students learn more about the variety of courses of study that Schoolcraft College offers, we’re introducing a new monthly feature called “Program Spotlight.” In each Program Spotlight, we’ll provide an overview of what students will learn, the expertise of our faculty and career outlook. For our first installment, we take a look at Medical Assisting, with an emphasis on apprenticeship opportunities with two leading healthcare systems.
The Medical Assisting program at Schoolcraft College prepares students for a wide range of careers in health care, including primary care, pediatrics, surgery, urgent care and more. The industry currently has a shortage of qualified workers and is aggressively trying to fill positions.
What’s the job?
Medical assistants play a versatile and vital role as they provide most of the care in a doctor’s office. This includes logging a patient’s insurance and other demographic information as well as medical history and medication list.
In addition to the “paper work,” medical assistants get vital signs and can perform injections, blood draws, testing and assist the doctor with minor procedures.
With all these roles and responsibilities, medical assistants provide a vital link between the patient and doctor to ensure a smooth experience.
What degrees or certificates are offered at Schoolcraft College?
Whether you are interested in the care-giving or administrative aspects of health care, Schoolcraft’s nationally accredited medical assisting program can prepare you for both.
The credential options are:
- Medical Biller/Receptionist Skills Certificate
- Medical Biller/Receptionist Program AGS Degree
- Phlebotomy Skills Certificate
- Phlebotomy Program AGS Degree
- Medical Assisting Certificate
- Medical Assisting Program AGS Degree
The medical biller/receptionist skills certificate can lead to a career in a variety of health care facilities, providing organizational and operational support.
The phlebotomy skills certificate program teaches students how to draw blood through the venipuncture method, preparing them for employment as a phlebotomist in a doctor’s office, clinic or health care facility.
The medical assisting certificate prepares entry-level medical assistants through areas of cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills) and affective (behavior) learning.
Apprenticeships available – earn while you learn
A key advantage of Schoolcraft College’s Medical Assisting program is its apprenticeship affiliations with IHA, which is part of Trinity Health, and also with Henry Ford Health System.
Apprenticeship students “earn while they learn” because the company that employs the student may also pay a portion or more of tuition to support their education. Because of the shortage of medical assistants, employers are turning to apprenticeships to grow their talent pipeline.
“We started the apprenticeship program almost two years ago at IHA due to the vast need of medical assistants within our company and the shortage that we’ve seen throughout Michigan,” said Annie Steiner, Talent Acquisition Manager, IHA. “We decided to grow from within our own medical assistants. We’ve had four now successfully graduate the program and become medical assistants with us.”
Employers ask for a two-year commitment after graduation.
“Apprenticeships are really a win-win for the student and the employer,” said Pamela Linton, Apprenticeship Coordinator for Schoolcraft College. “The employers are gaining students who are establishing a foundation with their educational training and bringing that to the workplace where they’re receiving on-the-job training!”
“And for the students, they have a job lined up in a place they like. Our latest data on medical assistants shows that after five years about 80% of the student apprentices are still with the company that sponsored them.”
Linton said the College is working to establish more registered apprenticeships in other health care fields, including Pharmacy Technician, a program offered now, and Surgical Technician, which will be offered starting in the Winter 2022 semester.
Mary Donahee-Rader, who was part of the first class of graduates for the Medical Assisting program at Schoolcraft College and is now the Program Director, encourages students to take advantage of the apprenticeship opportunities.
“You immediately get to employ the skills you learned at your place of employment – you don’t have to worry about forgetting anything,” she said. “There’s a huge shortage of medical assistants right now, so that lets them employ you immediately.”
You can learn more about Medical Assisting in this video.
National Apprenticeship Week
National Apprenticeship Week is November 15-21. On Wednesday, November 17, Schoolcraft College will hold a virtual event from 9-10:30 a.m. Pamela Linton, Apprenticeship Coordinator for Schoolcraft College, will speak about the support the College provides to employers and students to make transitioning in apprenticeship straightforward and simple. Register for the event online.
Read Schoolcraft College’s proclamation (PDF) in support of National Apprenticeship Week.