As an enrolled member of the Hopi Tribe and as a medical laboratory professional, it worries me that so few of our people are in this field. Native American medical lab professionals are far and few between which will only get worse when many of our current leaders retire.
A 2018 Bureau of Labor Statistics report on Occupational Employment and Wages for Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians showed the mean annual wage in this field was $53,880. This may not seem like enough to support a family, however, one must consider that this amount is the mean and is for both 2-year and 4-year degree lab professionals.
The two quickest routes to enter this field are through a Clinical Laboratory Science (CLS) program or a Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT) program. The major difference between these two programs is the time it takes to achieve your degree. The CLS program is a four-year degree with that will give you the knowledge to hit the ground running at any clinical lab. The MLT program is a two-year degree that will also give you the knowledge to hit the ground running.
Another route is by getting a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. This degree must include 16 semester hours of biological science, 16 semester hours of chemistry, one semester of mathematics and five years of a full time acceptable clinical laboratory experience. This is usually through blood banking, chemistry, hematology, microbiology, immunology and urinalysis/ body fluids 2.
Whichever route you chose to take, you are guaranteed a rewarding career with opportunities around the globe.
29-2010 Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians
“Clinical Laboratory Scientist.” USAJOBS, www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/555544100.