New Mexico is known for its stunning mountain vistas and wide open spaces. It is home to a great deal of indigenous Americans, or Native American Indians, and it has a large group of Hispanic citizens, as well. Since this state is not very population dense, people are spread out and don’t have access to adequate medical care in all parts of the state. For this reason, the medical field is looking for career minded individuals to fill in the medical gaps and bring quality care to all people. One great career for the office minded medical individual is medical assisting. You can find job opportunities and educational centers in the following large cities of New Mexico:
- Las Cruces
- Rio Rancho
- Santa Fe
Choosing a medical assisting school is no easy feat, and you should take your time to conduct a thorough search. You should ensure that the school you choose is fully accredited to perform medical assisting education, and that it has a good reputation as a school. You will also need to decide what type of degree you are pursuing, how far the location is from your home, and how much time you are willing to devote to your studies. All of these details can figure prominently in making a decision about a medical assisting school.
1. Santa Fe Community College
Locations: Santa Fe, NM
Santa Fe Community College offers only a certificate program in medical assisting. This is a great choice if you do not want to spend a great deal of time in school, because it only takes 18 months – or 3 semesters – to complete when taken full time. However, you may need to take the program on a part time basis, and this can extend the length of your time in school. This may be necessary for you, though, due to family or job responsibilities. Another item to consider is that a certificate will not allow you to further pursue a college degree. Some employers also require that you have a more advanced degree, so do your research when deciding which program to pursue.
2. Eastern New Mexico University – Roswell Campus
Locations: Roswell, NM
Eastern New Mexico University also offers a certificate program in medical assisting through its Roswell Campus. This school is accredited with a national accrediting body, so you will be able to sit for national medical assisting certification. Having certification is becoming more and more important now as the competition for medical jobs increases. If you pass certification and can claim that credential on your resume, you have more of a chance to get the job of your dreams. Whether you have an associate’s degree or a certificate, you can sit for your certification. The only question when it comes to education is what employers want and if you want to pursue education after obtaining your degree. This program is likely to only take one year full time, and it can certainly be broken up into part time components for easier attendance.
3. Pima Medical Institute
Locations: Albuquerque, NM
The Pima Medical Institute offers a nine month training program in medical assisting. Like the other schools listed, this program is a certificate program, and it focuses on training you for the basics. You will learn such things as anatomy and physiology, medical office procedures, and pharmacology. The job outlook for medical assistants in the United States is generally considered to be excellent, so you could not go wrong pursuing this career track. If you genuinely like helping people, enjoy working in an office environment, and want to cash in on the medical career explosion, this certificate program is likely a great choice for your needs.
4. National American University – Albuquerque
Locations: Albuquerque, NM
National American University is one of the only schools in the area to offer an associate’s degree in medical assisting. Although this study track takes almost two years to complete full time, the options with this line of schooling are endless. You are more attractive to employers if you have an advanced degree, although you can sit for certification regardless if you are a diploma or associate’s graduate. The great thing about this more advanced degree is that you can easily pursue a different degree in a subspecialty. For instance, you can transfer your general education credits in your medical assisting program to a nursing program, and you can pursue a two or four year degree in that field. With the certificate program, you do not have this flexibility, but the length of time required for an associate’s degree and other responsibilities may make this option difficult for you. As always, you must decide what is best for your education and, ultimately, your career.