What do Medical Assistants do?
What is the Medical Assisting degree/certificate?
WCC offers two options for aspiring medical assistants: an AS degree or a certificate. The difference between the two is in the number of general education/related instruction courses that a student completes. The program options run concurrently and are primarily a full-time course of study. The core courses for both the degree and certificate take 4-5 consecutive quarters to complete. All MA degree or certificate programs start each fall quarter annually. Program space is limited and a special application process and fee is required.
What is the difference between a Medical Assistant and a Nurse?
How is selection into the program made and how will I be notified?
Selective entry applications for the Medical Assisting degree and certificate are accepted on a first come, first served basis until the program seat limits are met. Applicants are evaluated based on completed application packets, including all required information and fee payments. The applicant must demonstrate that all prerequisites will be completed prior to the beginning of the starting quarter.
All applicants can expect to receive notification of status of application by letter within 2-4 weeks following the application deadline. If accepted, applicants will also be notified of the date and time for the required orientation session. Enrollment authorizations will be issued during the orientation session. It is important that the Registration/Records Office has your current address and telephone number so your letter can be delivered in a timely manner. You may update your contact information online at My Student Info OASIS if you know your SID and PIN or in person at the Registration/Records Office in Laidlaw Center, room 101.
If accepted, are there additional program requirements?
What are the requirements during/after the course of study?
Students must maintain satisfactory academic progress in order to remain in the program. Please refer to the 2014-2016 WCC catalog and the Medical Assisting Handbook for more information.
Occupational exposures - The Medical Assistant may be exposed to various chemicals used in disinfection and sterilization, laboratory testing reagents, biohazard waste and blood-borne pathogens, and communicable diseases. While in the Medical Assisting program, students may have similar occupational exposures. Safety issues and concerns when dealing with occupational exposures are a major focus within the Medical Assisting program curriculum.
Prior to externship, medical assisting students are required to obtain/maintain provider level CPR and First Aid certificates and the Seven-Hour HIV/AIDS Education Certificate. These certifications are not offered as part of the regular MA program and must be completed by the student on their own time.
Are there Tech-Prep credits that I can transfer from my high school for the Medical Assisting program?
What is the job market like for Medical Assistants? What are the wages?
Starting wages in Whatcom County for Medical Assistants generally range between $12.62 and $14.68 per hour; the median wage is $16.44 per hour.