If you’ve ever had an X-ray, you’ve probably met a radiologic technician—the person behind the machine. Also called a rad tech, this important healthcare professional takes images of broken bones and other conditions, which also assists in the diagnosis of diseases, medical conditions, and bodily injuries.
Mike Smith graduated from the radiologic tech program at Fortis College’s Landover, Md. campus in 2020. He chose radiologic technology because he loves the science behind it. “I was always intrigued by X-rays and found myself drawn to imaging,” he says.
A Rewarding New Chapter
Radiologic tech is a second career for Smith, who worked for several years in facilities maintenance. “I was attracted to healthcare because I think it is a more fulfilling job,” he shares. “I wanted to work with people, and that is one thing I love about my current career.”
Smith admits he was nervous about going back to school after he “just got by” in high school.
“Going back as an adult I was scared that I was not going to be able to do it,” he says. “I was 40 when I started, and I had all kinds of doubts about, ‘Was I too old? Would I be able to keep up?’ When I looked around my class, I was the oldest person there. That was good in a way because it kept me focused. The doubts I had got pushed to the back because there was just so much to learn.”
Smith now works at a hospital in the DC area and since graduating from Fortis has gone on to get his certification to perform CT scans as well. He has never regretted his choice to change directions and pursue a career in healthcare.
Pursing a New Career Path
If you’re thinking of pursuing a career or second career in radiologic technology, Smith offers three pieces of advice:
- Take the jump. Just take a breath and do it. Now or never. Just do it.
- Stick to it. Don’t give up. It will be hard, but whatever the situation, do not give up. Just keep pushing through.
- Stay focused. Keep shooting for your finish line.
If Smith’s journey has been inspiring and the role of a radiologic technician sounds like a fit for you, Fortis can help you prepare for this meaningful career. The radiologic technology program is available at many of our campuses located in Louisiana, Maryland, Ohio, and Tennessee. To learn more, please visit our site.