The Respiratory Care graduates of Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College (SKCTC) have passed their licensure exams at 100 percent for the fifth consecutive year. In order to become employed, graduates must pass the National Board for Respiratory Care Therapist Multiple Choice Exam.
According to Wendy Wright, respiratory care coordinator at the college, these scores are even more remarkable when held against the national average. “The national exam pass rate, with multiple attempts, is 66.1 percent. Our pass rate was 100 percent for the first attempt,” said Wright.
In 2019, the college graduated 11 students from the program. Wright says that all graduates are working in their field, and most had secured jobs prior to graduation.
In order to accommodate working adults and to offset the projected shortage of therapists in the coming years, the college has shortened the program from two years to 15 months. As a result, students will be able to graduate with their associate of applied science degree in only three semesters.
While Wright acknowledges that her graduates have been consistently placed in lucrative and exciting jobs, she says that the ultimate reward is far greater. “We become therapists not for money or prestige, but because we care about our patients,” she said.