Baker College students in the Surgical Technology Lab
In a remarkable achievement, graduates of Baker College’s Surgical Technology Program have achieved a 100% pass rate on the Certification of Surgical Technologist (CST) credentialing exam through the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA). Despite the challenges posed by the global pandemic, which interrupted many aspects of institutional learning across the world, these graduates have surpassed the national average for CST scores, which have been below 80% since the pandemic began. These scores from the most recent exam taken in April 2023 are a sign that Baker College is committed to helping students learn, prepare, and apply skills attained in degree and certificate programs.
The demand for skilled healthcare workers is at an all-time high, with more than half of the 20 fastest-growing occupations in America belonging to the healthcare industry, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook. In an effort to assist with this demand, Baker College has a mission to graduate prepared entry level surgical technologists into the field, and the pass rate indicates students have the stamp of approval by the NBSTSA.
“The exemplar exam results are a reflection of the work we do as a team which demonstrates our commitment to excellence and high standards within our program. We educate and train our students to provide care for a diverse, aging, and ever-changing patient population,” said Tanya Lewis, Dean of the College of Health Science. “We incorporate real world technology into our classrooms and labs which is instrumental in our 2-year plan of study. We maintain a quality program that nurtures students’ growth as professionals while providing the gateway for these students to be adequately prepared to assist surgeons in the operating room.”
Lewis also emphasized the importance of formal training for surgical assistants, as not all working in the field have this benefit. She believes the individual support, education, and training provided by Baker College add significant value to the healthcare field by ensuring patients receive the highest level of care.
One of the factors that sets Baker College apart is its team of experienced Program Directors in Surgical Technology. With 95% of faculty and staff in this division currently remaining in practice in some form, their hands are connected to the work, so they provide more than just textbook knowledge. These practicing clinicians bring real-world skills and expertise to the classroom, ensuring students receive the most up-to-date knowledge and training.
The success of Baker College’s Surgical Technology Program students is a testament to the quality of education and training provided by the institution. By achieving a 100% pass rate on the credentialing exam, these graduates have demonstrated their readiness to enter the field and provide exceptional care. “The pass rate is a mark of excellence that they have been trained and prepared for clinical practice,” Lewis said. “This commitment to quality and excellence is what makes Baker College’s Surgical Technology Program stellar.”
The mission of the NBSTSA is to provide professional certification of surgical technologists (CST) and surgical first assistants (CSFA), thus promoting quality patient care in the surgical setting. The CST 2020 national pass rate was 73.7% (nbstsa.org).
Baker College is one of Michigan’s largest, private, nonprofit institutions that grants associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees on campuses across Michigan and online. Founded in 1911, the mission is to provide an inclusive, innovative, and transformative educational experience. Learn more at baker.edu and follow on X, Meta, and Instagram. Surgical Technology classes are taught at the Cadillac, Muskegon, and Owosso campuses. Learn more here.