• May 2016 Poll Results

    In the May issue of the e-newsletter, we asked readers to tell us how long it takes to fill out the online annual report once all the required information is collected. Continue Reading...
  • Top 5 Tips for Surviving Faculty Turnover

    Whew! Your annual report is submitted. You just graduated another class. Your grads are happily starting their first jobs as brand new certified surgical technologists. Now you can relax for a bit before you have to get ready for the next enrollment. But wait: Your clinical coordinator just informed you he’s resigning and moving away from your community. Your calm transition into the next academic year now has the potential for chaos. No matter what your role is in the faculty hiring process, here are a few tips to get your new instructor up and running ASAP. Continue Reading...
  • Going the Distance: Using Online Learning to Deliver Your Program Statewide Using the “Montana Model”

    One of the reasons I left the operating room behind for a teaching career was because everything became too technical. I was spending more time figuring out why the image on the monitor was unclear than I was caring for my patients. When I went back to school, I found myself smack dab in the middle of classes learning about distance learning and wondering about its application in surgical technology education. Continue Reading...
  • ARC/STSA’s May AFE Workshop and SVT-B

    This year's Accreditation Fundamentals for Educators (AFE) and Site Visitors Training for Beginners (SVT-B), both sponsored by the ARC/STSA, was held on May 31, 2016, in sunny San Diego. Held in conjunction with the Association of Surgical Technologists (AST) Conference, the course is designed to introduce first-year directors with opportunities to learn about the CAAHEP's Standards and Guidelines and its accreditation process. Continue Reading...
  • Get to Know CAAHEP, Part Two

    In part one of this two-part series, featured in the May 2016 issue of the ARC/STSA E-newsletter, we learned a little bit more about CAAHEP: What the organization is, as well as its history, mission, vision and function. With this understanding of CAAHEP’s goal — to create quality educational programs that prepare students for a successful career in surgical technology and surgical assisting — we can better understand the relationship between CAAHEP and ARC/STSA. The Accreditation Review Council on Education in Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (ARC/STSA) was formed by the American Medical Association’s (AMA) Council on Medical Education in 1972 after educational standards for the surgical technology field were adopted. When specialized accreditation programs began just two years later, standards of compliance were developed by the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and the Association of Surgical Technologists (AST). In 1994, ARC/STSA became separately incorporated and one of the member Committees on Accreditation under CAAHEP’s umbrella. Accreditation is a method of ensuring that agreed-upon standards of performance and quality have been met by educational institutions and professional programs. CAAHEP is the largest programmatic/specialized accreditor in the healthcare field and the accrediting body for the surgical technology and surgical assisting programs. But they don’t do it alone. CAAHEP looks to accreditation review councils with expertise in different program areas to help ensure programs meet the standards that have been set forth. ARC/STSA administers programs to ensure the elements required for CAAHEP accreditation are met, including: Self-study: The program analyzes how well it meets the Standards and Guidelines set forth by CAAHEP; On-site Evaluation: A team of site visitors travel to institutions for a site evaluation; Committee Review and Recommendation: The Committee on Accreditation for the relevant discipline will review the results of the site evaluation and make a recommendation for accreditation or identify deficiencies; and CAAHEP Board of ... Continue Reading...
  • Get to Know CAAHEP

    In this two-part series, we’ll be delving into who exactly CAAHEP is, as well as the relationship between CAAHEP and ARC/STSA. While the name “CAAHEP” is well-recognized, its history, mission, vision and function may be a little murkier. The goal of CAAHEP is ultimately the same as yours: to create quality educational programs that prepare students for a successful career in surgical technology and surgical assisting. And, ultimately, CAAHEP seeks to ensure that these students are equipped to best serve their future patients. As the program director, you want to know how your program stacks up to similar organizations throughout the United States, not only to ensure that students are receiving a top-notch education, but also to prove to your dean, colleagues, students, students’ future employers, the general public and other stakeholders that your program in fact meets the standards necessary to properly equip students for their career in the health profession. Talk about pressure! Here’s where accreditation comes into play: It is the best way to “systematically approach asking and answering the fundamental question: How good is this educational program?” And you aren’t alone in the accreditation process – ARC/STSA and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Program (CAAHEP) are here to help. To that end, CAAHEP’s mission is “to assure quality health professions education to serve the public interest.” In other words, CAAHEP wants the same thing you do: to create quality education programs that prepare students for a successful career in surgical technology and surgical assisting. Currently, CAAHEP, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization, carries out accrediting activities for 2,100 entry-level education programs in 28 health science professions, making it the largest programmatic accreditor in the health sciences field! While an impressive figure, the magnitude of CAAHEP’s programs, responsibilities and oversight might seem overwhelming and make its role ... Continue Reading...
  • Poll Question: May Issue

    In each issue of the e-newsletter, we will be including a poll question for readers to answer. Then, we will analyze the data and include a summary in the upcoming issue of the publication. All answers are confidential and strictly for the purpose of helping you better understand what your fellow program directors are up to. After gathering all the data, how long did it take you to fill out your online annual report? Take the poll. Continue Reading...
  • Top 5 Items to Remember when Sending Your Annual Report

    We understand that sending in the annual report isn’t exactly the most fun task on your to-do list. And we can’t really make it more exciting, but we can help make it more comprehensive. Director of Education and Professional Affairs at ARC/STSA, Arthur A. Makin, BS, CST, FAST, put together a list of answers to often-heard questions related to the annual report. Check the reporting date range. When discussing program enrollment, the “anticipated completion date” refers to the date in the future when your current students would be graduating. Remember to use the directions as a reference tool as you work in the report online. Print them out while you are working and glance over whenever you need them. Use the quick start document, which contains multiple reference tools to help you complete your report. Remember to review the report before sending it, as it cannot be edited after you press submit. Continue Reading...
  • Program Director in the Spotlight: JoLane Collins

    The Program Director in the Spotlight Series will highlight a specific program director who is overcoming a tough challenge, making an impact on the industry, and generally going above and beyond the call of duty. This month, we are highlighting JoLane Collins, surgical technology program director at the Technical College of the Lowcountry (TCL) in beautiful Beaufort, South Carolina. In this article, JoLane details her arduous and winding journey to surgical technology and the lessons she’s learned along the way: Never let anyone tell you that you can’t do something and everything happens for a reason. Let me take you on a little trip down memory lane. In the early 1980s, I attended Washington State University, and during my first week on campus, found myself going through sorority rush. A gal asked me what I was going to major in and my response was, “I really want to be an orthopedic surgeon.” Her response, “Are you crazy, that’s 14-18 more years of school.” At that moment, I allowed another individual to alter my life course, and I went into education and athletic training. I graduated from Washington State University with a BA in education and obtained my Athletic Training Certification. Moving forward to the late 1980s, I received an MA in education, with minors in athletic training and health education. After completing my master’s degree, a high school in Greeley, Colorado, hired me as a teacher, and I also served as the athletic trainer with a full teaching load. It’s hard to explain what three years of teaching high school students can do to your psyche, but I also gained valuable insight into the world of teenagers. Fast forwarding again to 1990, this decade saw my move to Sidney, Nebraska, where I started working at a sports medicine clinic. During my tenure as ... Continue Reading...
  • Welcome to the New ARC/STSA E-newsletter

    ARC/STSA is excited to launch its redesigned e-newsletter, a comprehensive publication to keep you connected with your fellow program directors and informed about updates. Within these digital pages, you will find profiles about program directors around the country who are facing — and overcoming — some of the same obstacles you are, as well as case studies on successful programs, tips and tricks, and other relevant content presented in an easily digestible way. Consider the e-newsletter your modern day “Ask Jeeves,” as it helps you navigate your way to program excellence. ARC/STSA wants to be your resource for all things accreditation, so please email marketing@arcstsa.org with ideas for poll questions, program directors to spotlight, problems you are facing, case studies, etc. Let your voice be heard and learn from others. Continue Reading...
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