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Phlebotomy/Laboratory Assistant

Phlebotomy/Lab assistants collect and process blood specimens for testing in the medical laboratory.

Degree Description

The Phlebotomy program is a one-semester certificate program that will prepare students for entry-level positions as a phlebotomist in the medical field. The program provides the didactic and clinical training necessary to meet the eligibility requirements for the national certification examinations.

The Lab assistant diploma is a two-semester diploma program that will prepare students for career opportunities as a laboratory assistant in the healthcare field. The program also provides the basic foundational skills for continuation into the Medical Laboratory Technician Program.

Clinicals, practicums, and internships may include but are not limited to differential shifts (evenings, nights, weekends, and holidays) to meet industry expectations. Clinicals may occur during summer semester depending on program enrollments. This may require travel outside the Rapid City area.

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Application Process

To gain acceptance into the WDT Phlebotomy/Laboratory Assistant program, applicants must:

1. Complete Western Dakota Tech Admissions Application
2. Complete the ACCUPLACER test ($15 fee)
3. Schedule your Admissions Advising Session
4. Provide an official copy of a High School transcript or GED scores. If you graduated from an international high school, you must submit your transcript to Educational Credential Evaluators to determine U.S. equivalence. Additionally, an official transcript must be submitted if you have attended other post-secondary institutions or universities.
5. Submit Immunization Records verifying two doses of MMR vaccinations
6. Once you receive your acceptance letter, schedule a time to register for classes

(The ACCUPLACER test will be waived if you have an ACT sub-score of 18 or better in English, Math, and Reading, or a SAT sub-score of at least 440 in Verbal and Math.  The scores must be within the last five years.)

Please call 605-718-2565 to make an appointment.

To continue into Phlebotomy/Laboratory Assistant clinical, students may have to provide the following:

1. Background check*

2. Complete a drug test*

3. Provide a copy of immunization records (Hepatitis B Series, Varicella, TDAP, Annual Record of TB and Annual Flu Shot)*

*Students are responsible for additional costs.

The program lead instructor will assist students with any clinical or internship site requirements.

Note: If you are or have been convicted, pleaded guilty or no contest to, or received a suspended imposition of sentence for a felony or certain misdemeanors, you are advised that you may not be able to complete all course requirements for your chosen program, you may be prevented from taking required certification/licensure examinations in your chosen program field, and you may be prevented from gaining employment in your program field.

Students that sit out for a spring or fall semester or longer, will return under a new Catalog and may be required to repeat courses or successfully complete new or revised skills or competency assessments. Before readmittance, the program may need to determine if a student is eligible to continue in technical courses. Program sequencing and cohort size may prevent enrollment in technical courses.

Clinicals, practicums, and internships may include, but are not limited to differential shifts (evenings, nights, weekends, and holidays) to meet industry expectations. Clinicals may occur during summer semester depending on program enrollments. This may require travel outside the Rapid City Area.

Download Application Process Checklist

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Career Description

Phlebotomists/lab assistants collect, transport, handle, and process blood and microbiology, and other body fluid specimens for laboratory analysis and may also perform waived and point of care testing. They identify and select equipment, supplies, and additives used in blood collection and understand factors that affect specimen collection procedures and test results. Recognizing the importance of specimen collection in the overall patient care system, phlebotomists adhere to infection control and safety policies and procedures. They monitor quality control within predetermined limits while demonstrating professional conduct, stress management, and communication skills with patients, peers, and other health care personnel as well as with the public.

Phlebotomists/Laboratory assistants are employed in hospitals, physician offices, and clinics, urgent care facilities, and blood banks as blood procurement specialists.

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Licensure and Certification

Professional licensure and certification requirements often vary from state to state. If you are not planning to locate and work in South Dakota and are considering an academic program that leads to a professional license or certification, it is highly recommended that you first seek guidance from the appropriate licensing agency in the state you plan to work before beginning the academic program. If you need assistance locating a state licensing agency, please contact the Vice President for Teaching and Learning: or 605.718.2905.

Current as of July 12, 2021:

  1. The program curriculum meets educational requirements for licensure/certification in the following states: AK, AL, AR, GA, IA, KS, MI, MN, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OR, PA, RI, SD, TX, UT, VA, VT, WI, WY
  2. The program curriculum does not meet educational requirements for licensure/certification in the following states: AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, HI, ID, IL, IN, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MO, NH, The Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, NV, OK, SC, TN, WA, WV
  3. WDT has not determined whether the program curriculum meets educational requirements for licensure/certification in the following states: American Samoa, DC, Guam, The Republic of the Marshall Islands, The Federated States of Micronesia, The Republic of Palau, The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, The Virgin Islands

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After Earning Your Degree

Phlebotomists are employed in hospitals, physician offices and clinics, medical laboratories, and in blood banks as blood procurement specialists. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2019 mean annual wage is $21,970 - $32,040. Employment of phlebotomists is projected to grow 25 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. Hospitals, diagnostic laboratories, blood donor centers, and other locations will need phlebotomists to perform bloodwork.

Meet Your Faculty

Western Dakota Tech has a low student-to-faculty ratio, meaning more one-on-one learning. Individual attention from your professor can make your college experience more fulfilling.

  • Christine Ousley

Financial Aid

Continuing your education is crucial and Western Dakota Tech wants to make sure that any student who wants to attend school, has the opportunity to do so. For this reason, WDT is dedicated to administering the U.S. Department of Education’s Title IV Financial Assistance Program fair and consistently to anyone who needs it.

Build Dakota Scholarships

The Build Dakota Scholarship at Western Dakota Tech will pay all your tuition and fees and prepare you for a career that is in-demand and growing in South Dakota. Build Dakota Scholarships will be awarded to students entering high-need workforce programs at South Dakota’s technical institutes to fill the state’s technical careers with skilled professionals.

Student Housing

While Western Dakota Tech does not offer on-campus housing, we understand that finding a place to live within town while you go to school can be difficult. We have a few resources to help prospective students find affordable housing.

Child Care

Finding child care during school is a challenge for many students. Western Dakota Tech currently does not offer on-campus child care, but here are some resources that may help you in your search.

Youth & Family Services is an organization dedicated to helping children in Western South Dakota. They offer a variety of services, including child care at multiple locations.

The Y of Rapid City offers child care and other services.

Disclaimer: Western Dakota Tech provides these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply affiliation, endorsement or adoption by Western Dakota Tech of any site or any information contained therein. When you leave, you should be aware that our terms and policies no longer govern. Western Dakota Tech makes no claim or representation regarding, and accepts no responsibility for, the quality, content, nature or reliability of third-party websites or vendors.

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