Donita Dixon says a career in sonography has many benefits for someone who wants to work in health care.

“Sonography requires critical thinking skills and makes learning about the body fun,” the cardiac and vascular sonography student said. “It is a challenging but very interesting program. I wanted a less invasive medical job, and cardiac and vascular sonography was my choice.”

JCC offers two associate degree paths for sonography – medical sonography and cardiac and vascular sonography. The programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

Medical sonography teaches students how to take, view, and analyze sonograms over a wide range of body areas, including the abdomen and reproductive system. Cardiac and vascular sonography focuses on ultrasounds of the human heart and vascular structures.

JCC is one of only 9 accredited associate degree sonography programs in North Carolina. New sonographers can expect to earn about $30 an hour and can find employment in hospitals, clinics, physician’s offices, mobile services, and educational institutions.

Each fall, the college generally enrolls 15 students in medical sonography and 10 students in cardiac and vascular sonography.

Steven Penny is the director of sonography programs at JCC. He says instructors set high expectations for students.

In 2017, 100 percent of medical and cardiac and vascular students passed their American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography certification exam. The college also had a 100-percent employment rate after graduation.

“This program is very demanding academically,” he said. We set the bar high and we push our students to achieve way above the bar. “We don’t settle for the minimum.”

Penny, a 1999 graduate of JCC’s sonography program, says instructors train students to be good sonographers and responsible employees.

“We try to instill in our students the importance of professional growth and development,” he said. We not only prepare them for certification exams, but we prepare them for employment in a highly-specialized and competitive health care environment.”

Loganne Driver is a medical sonography student. She said she appreciated the one-on-one instruction from her instructors.

“Whenever I have a question or problem, it is almost always solved that day,” she said. “The instructors are always there with you in the class and scan lab, helping and supporting you every step of the way.”

Dixon, a Raleigh resident, said the program’s high certification and job placement rate made JCC the easy choice for her.

“There are very few colleges that offer this program and JCC is the most convenient college for me,” Dixon said. “I had heard the reputation of the program was outstanding, has a high graduation rate and most students are hired over other students from other sonography programs.”

Students must apply and get accepted into the sonography programs. The application deadline is March 1. Applicants must also attend a health sciences information session. 

For more information about sonography at JCC, please visit www.johnstoncc.edu/sonography.