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Kelly Kirkpatrick, RT(R)

photo of Kelly Kirkpatrick

Radiologic Technologist
Baylor Medical Center at Frisco

“I picked radiology because, after a 10-year career in the networking/telecom industry and having gone through multiple layoffs, I wanted job security more than anything else. A friend who was an X-ray tech got me interested in radiology as a career. I did some checking around and found the Brookhaven program.

“I had no experience in the medical field, but as I got into the program, I came to really enjoy it. Doing well in school and overcoming those initial challenges to become good at what I do — I really loved that.

“I had a great clinical education. Spending four days a week doing your clinical time in a hospital, well, you can’t get a better education than that — working with experienced technologists actually doing the X-rays. I had some really great clinical instructors who continually challenged me and were wonderful educators.

“The most important thing I learned during the program was not the textbook stuff. Rather, it was how to be comfortable with, and maintain a positive attitude around, my patients. Most patients are sick or hurt, or not in the best mood, and it’s so rewarding to be able to bring a smile to their faces and show them that you truly care about them.

“We have a lot of Brookhaven students who come through Baylor-Frisco for their clinical rotations, and some of them have expressed concern about finding a job when they graduate. I can say with certainty that there is plenty of work for new graduates. Most hospitals are open 24/7, so while the hours or days may not be ideal, there are plenty of opportunities for graduates right from the start.

“Once you finish the Radiologic Sciences program, there are so many doors that will be open to you after getting some experience: You can cross-train in other modalities such as CT or MRI, work toward a supervisory/managerial position and much more. The opportunities will definitely be there; this is just the beginning.”

Kelly Kirkpatrick earned an Associate in Applied Sciences degree in Radiologic Sciences in December 2005 from Brookhaven College.

In his job as a radiologic technologist at Baylor Medical Center at Frisco, he performs a wide variety of radiographic and fluoroscopic exams in the radiology department as well as running C-arms, a mobile fluoroscopy unit, in the operating room. He was offered his current position while he was finishing his clinical rotation there.