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What does an X-ray Technician do?

Have you ever wished you had the ability to see right through people? Ever wanted the super power of x-ray vision? X-ray technician (often called radiographers) might be the job for you. You can be in charge of diagnostic imaging examinations, which include x-rays, magnetic resonance imaging, computed tomography, and mammography. As a technician, your primary responsibility is most likely to prepare patients for the exam, making sure that minimal radiation exposure is present.

Job requirements for x-ray technicians

The key requirements to succeed in this field are simple: follow instructions and safety protocol. This includes following physicians’ orders precisely and making sure to conform to regulations concerning the use of radiation for the protection of patients, coworkers and yourself. You may also be responsible for preparing operating equipment for each procedure, as well as maintain that equipment, keep patient records and follow HIPPA standards. In addition, you can assume more responsibility and complete tasks such as complex imaging, like viewing the soft tissue in the body.

x-ray technician

Training to become an x-ray technician

Your new special skills of x-ray vision can be acquired in as little as 21-24 months. The minimum educational requirement asked by most employers is a certificate. There are also associate degrees and bachelor’s degress available in the field. They take more time to obtain, but can lead to career and salary advancements with additional work experience. After completing the training program that best suits you, you will likely have to obtain licensure since most states require all x-ray technicians to be licensed.

See through your career

As an x-ray technician, you can choose from multiple career paths. Depending on which is more important to you, money or work hours, you can be a tech in a regular doctor’s office with weekday hours, which pays slightly less than the average for professionals in this field, or you can chose to work in a medical or diagnostic lab or a federal executive branch, which generally pays more than the national average for this profession.

Choosing to become a specialist in a certain field, performing more advanced scans such as CTs, MRIs, mammography, or bone densitometry, may improve your employment opportunities. You can also seek further education in order to advance your career as a radiologic assistant. With enough experience in the field you could advance to supervisor over a radiology department, or to Chief radiologic technician. You could also become a department administrator or director.

What does a Youth Counselor do?

If you have a desire to help young people and find that they naturally open up to you, then you may be well-suited for a career as a youth counselor. Guiding young people during times of change and challenge can be a fulfilling professional experience that rewards you with much more than a paycheck.

Youth counselor job duties

While there are many career paths you can take as a youth counselor, your primary goal is to ensure young people’s emotional and physical well-beings and help them navigate life’s challenges.

Depending on your specialty, you may assist youth with school or employment issues, trauma, mental health disorders, substance abuse, disabilities, or a combination of these.

Job duties generally include meeting with youth and sometimes their families, scheduling and overseeing activities, completing required paperwork, and advising and meeting with social workers and other professionals. You may work alone or as part of a team that includes teachers, psychologists, and social workers.

youth counselor

Potential youth counselor career paths

A variety of career paths exist for those interested in becoming a youth counselor. You have the opportunity to work in several settings, including schools, group homes, correctional facilities, hospitals, government agencies, and private practice. You may choose to work with at-risk youths in a residential setting, which often involves substance-abuse and mental-health counseling. Such a position usually requires that you oversee individual and group counseling sessions, which may bring up a variety of issues, including depression, stress, and family problems.

As a youth counselor at an educational institution such as a high school or college, you are likely to address issues surrounding academic and career challenges, although other topics may arise. Rehabilitation counselors address the emotional and physical requirements of children with special needs.

Youth counselor educational requirements

Your training to become a youth counselor entails instruction in recognizing client concerns and identifying the appropriate treatment.According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, education requirements vary from state to state, but the career generally requires a master’s degree.

Counselor programs are located in the education, psychology or human services department of universities and colleges. Fields of specialized study offered can include subjects such as gerontological counseling, substance abuse, and college student affairs. Most accredited master’s degree programs require 48 to 60 semester hours of graduate study that includes a period of supervised counseling.

Youth counselor career outlook

The youth counseling profession is expected to grow faster than average in coming years. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the career in general to average a 14 to 19 percent increase. Counselors specializing in substance abuse and behavioral disorders can expect a 20 percent rise in available jobs.