Hawaii experienced an ongoing labor shortage in the health care industry in 2018, and it is expected to continue into 2019. As the state continues to address the shortage, there is great interest in expanding access to healthcare in rural and isolated areas where community health centers are functioning as central points for services delivery. Diagnostic Medical Sonographers will find expanding opportunities on the main island of Honolulu and on the Neighbor Islands.
Sonography Schooling in Hawaii
Becoming a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer who is prepared to sit for the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) exam requires attending a CAAHEP accredited sonography program. All CAAHEP accredited sonography programs require completing coursework and hands-on learning in a clinical setting.
2 Options for Schooling
There are no accredited ultrasound technician schools in Hawaii as of 2018, but anyone who wants to become an ultrasound technician has two choices. The first choice is to attend an accredited out-of-state ultrasound program. The second choice is to attend an accredited online program. However, it is important to understand that all CAAHEP sonography programs require coursework and clinical training.
There is a comprehensive list of schools by state that have programs in Diagnostic Medical Sonography or Ultrasound Technology at our Accredited Sonography School Directory 2018. This is an excellent way to begin a search for programs because the website provides the name of the school, the city and state where it is located, and school contact information. Note that there are different educational program settings that include major medical centers, universities, community colleges and others.
Students in Hawaii who want to attend a campus program will need to find an out-of-state school. The closest state to Hawaii is California, which is approximately 2,300 miles away. However, there are 12 ultrasound programs accredited by CAAHEP in California, and they include medical centers, colleges, universities and as dedicated to the allied health sciences.
Benefits of Taking an Online Accredited Sonography Program
Choosing to complete a distance education program versus attending a school in person is a personal decision that needs to consider a number of factors. Accredited online ultrasound technician schools in 2018:
- are more convenient and especially when living in a distant state like Hawaii
- offer students the opportunity to pursue their desired profession without regard for location
- offer classes that are more flexible in terms of times and completion expectations
- expand school choices without regard to location
2 Approved Distance Learning Sonography Schools
CAAHEP has approved three schools offering distance learning programs in sonography.
The Washburn University program in Topeka, Kansas and the Jackson College program in Jackson, Michigan have been offering their programs for many years. Washburn University offers online sonography certificate programs. Jackson College offers a certificate program and Associate degree programs in Diagnostic Medical Sonography. State Fair Community College in Sedalia, Missouri offers Associate degree programs in general sonography, cardiac sonography and vascular sonography. These schools will work with students to find an approved facility for clinical training that is as convenient as possible.
One of the many advantages of completing a CAAHEP accredited ultrasound program is that program graduates are ready to take the ARDMS exams to get sonography certification. Exam eligibility depends on the program completed, which can include a concentration in general, cardiac, pediatric cardiac and vascular concentrations. At the three online schools the ultrasound program coursework can be completed online, but the schools also require completing clinical training. This is one major reason why CAAHEP accredited programs are recognized as quality programs that thoroughly prepare students for performing sonography job duties.
To find accredited online sonography schools or accredited ultrasound technician schools in other states, please visit our accredited ultrasound technician school directory and use the interactive chart to search your school and program.
Salary and Career Outlook for Sonographers in Hawaii
Hawaii has 150 employed Diagnostic Medical Sonographers as of May 2017 according to the U.S. Department of Labor. They are paid an average of $90,250, and that is higher than the national average of $73,200. The wages paid do vary by city or island. For example, the medium wage for an ultrasound technologist in Honolulu is approximately $92,760, but the medium salary in the Hawaii/Kauai nonmetropolitan area is much lower. | See Job Openings
However, statistics indicate that employment for ultrasound technicians is expected to grow at a slower rate than the national average between the years 2014 and 2024. Hawaii’s projected employment growth is 19.8 percent compared to a national job growth rate of 26.4 percent. There may be more rapid growth in specialty areas like cardiovascular sonography. Beginning in 2019, there may also be more opportunities on Neighbor Islands to Honolulu because the population is growing at a faster rate than on the main island. The Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism reported that 40 percent of population growth between 2000 and 2030 will be on the Neighbor Islands.
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