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SLU MRI Program Works to Combat Growing Technologist Shortage

There are roughly 12,000 magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) systems in the United States, but not nearly enough trained people to run them. Much like the rest of the country, the St. Louis region is facing a growing demand for highly skilled, registered MRI technologists to operate these cutting-edge diagnostic health care devices. 

The number of immediate job openings in the MRI field continues to grow daily, with some employers offering sign-on bonuses. With the prospect of this job shortage facing the United States, the Saint Louis University Magnetic Resonance Imaging program is eager to help teach future technologists.

"MRI is the hot field to be in right now. The predicted job growth rate is over 23 percent nationally, and MRI is anticipated to be the global leader in the medical imaging market," said SLU MRI Program Clinical Coordinator Austin Turner, M.S., CNMT, PET, RT(MR). "MRI technologists have one of the highest median salaries in the field-over $75,000 per year in some parts of the country."

SLU  offers the only Bachelor of Science in magnetic resonance imaging in the region. Students receive comprehensive training in the field and complete clinical rotations in a variety of health care settings, all located in the greater St. Louis area. Graduates are eligible to take the national registry exam and find immediate employment.

"Since starting in 2012, our MRI Program has been incredibly successful,"said SLU MRI Program Director Marcey Kennedy, MA, ARMRIT, RT(MR).  "To date, our graduates have a 100 percent first-time pass rate on the national registry exam, as well as a 100 percent employment rate within one year of graduation."

We have a six-to-one student-to-faculty ratio, and our students train in some of the best hospitals and clinics in the area. The successes of our graduates show that our program is the best avenue to address this rapidly changing job market."

The SLU MRI program is part of the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Therapeutics in the Doisy College of Health Sciences. Immediate openings are available for undergraduate and second-degree students.

For more information, contact the program at (314) 977-8526.