AUSTIN, TX October 10, 2019 -- The College of Health Care Professions (CHCP), announced the launch of a new associate’s degree in surgical technology at its Austin campus. The innovative program blends classroom learning with hands-on training in response to the growing demand for trained surgical technologists from local employers including Ascension Texas and Baylor Scott & White.
“Surgical technology is a fast-growing field that requires highly specific and technical training,” said Valerie Esparza, Director of Workforce Development, Diversity, and Inclusion at Ascension Texas. “This program represents a true partnership between a pioneering college -- and Austin healthcare employers -- to close today’s skills gaps, while building a more diverse, inclusive workforce for the future.”
The demand for skilled healthcare workers continues to rise across Texas, with skilled surgical technologist jobs expected to increase by more than 20% by 2026, according to the Texas Workforce Commission. Surgical technologists in the Austin area report average annual wages of $50,390, well above the average for associate’s degree holders in Texas.
“The skills employees need are rapidly changing as healthcare technology advances,” said Donavan Kip Murphy, a board certified orthopedic surgeon employed by Baylor Scott & White, and a member of the CHCP Austin Surg Tech Advisory Board. “By partnering with CHCP throughout the formation of the program, we’ve ensured that graduates will have the sort of surgical technology training that employers are looking for.”
Founded by physicians, CHCP is committed to providing students with a clear link between training and career, partnering with over 1000 employers and community partners to prepare and place students in meaningful work. CHCP recently opened a new surgical technology facility at an event that honored the Austin campus’ employer and community partners committed to student success, including Ascension Texas, Austin Voices and their foodbank in Dobie Middle School, the Austin Independent School District, First Chiropractic, People’s Community Clinic, FastMed Urgent Care, Physician Services Group- Central/West Texas Division, Kapsner Chiropractic, and CommunityCare.
“CHCP was created to meet real-world demand for skilled workers in one of the state’s fastest-growing industries,” said Eric Bing, chief executive officer of CHCP. “We are committed to working with employers throughout the region in ways that enable our students to translate education experiences into career outcomes and in doing so increasing quality healthcare for all Texans.”
Earlier this month as a testament of its leadership in Texas, CHCP-Austin was recognized as the school of the year, and Ascension Texas as the employer of the year, by The Career Colleges & Schools of Texas.