Will I be able to find a job?
The demand for medical laboratory scientists continues to grow because of an increasing demand for diagnostic laboratory procedures. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the employment of MLS professionals will increase by 14% through the year 2018, producing 45,600 vacancies in the field.
How much money will I make?
The starting wages for MLS professionals are competitive and increasing each year. Although the actual salary depends heavily on geographical area and cost of living, in 2008 the midian salary for MLS professionals was listed as $54,220/year (Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-2011 Edition). Salaries increase as experience is gained and additional responsibilities are added.
What is professional certification?
To become certified, students first complete the degree program and then must successfully write a national certification examination. Upon completion of the degree program, students are eligible to write the national exam offered for Medical Laboratory Scientists, sponsored by the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP). Some states require a state license in order to practice as a Medical Laboratory Scientist.
What is professional membership?
As a student, you are encouraged to enroll in a professional organization. Membership entitles you to all privileges and benefits designated to student members, including receipt for professional journals and announcements of local, regional, and national meetings. Medical Laboratory Scientists most commonly join the American Society of Clinical Laboratory Science (ASCLS) and the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP). More information on these organizations is available on the web at www.ascls.org or www.ascp.org.
What about graduate study?
Our graduates have performed very well in their medical and dental studies, demonstrating that MLS is an excellent pre-medicine or pre-dentistry major. Others have pursued graduate studies in such areas as biomedical research, health care management, law, and education.