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Posts for September 2014

WDT students celebrate Surgical Technologists Week

WDT students celebrate Surgical Technologists Week

Students at Western Dakota Tech were treated to a special breakfast this morning to celebrate National Surgical Technologists Week.

The celebration is spearheaded by the Association of Surgical Technologists and is recognized nationally. Across the country, hospitals and other healthcare facilities throw small celebrations to show appreciation for surgical technologists.

"National Surgical Technologists Week is a time of recognition for the hard-working technologists who work tirelessly from behind the mask," said Tiffany Howe, Program Director for Surgical Technology at WDT.

As direct patient care advocates, surgical technologists play an important role in the healthcare industry. Surgical technologists work closely with surgeons, nurses, and other industry professionals. They are trained to maintain a sterile and clean environment during surgery to prevent the risk of infections. Surgical technologists have a direct impact on the success of surgery and patient outcomes.

Howe said, "Everything a surgical technologist does on a daily basis reflects a promise to our patients to respect, protect, and be an advocate for them. Our motto is 'aeger primo', the patient first."

Job outlook for surgical technologists is favorable. The industry is expected to grow 30 percent from 2012-2022, which is much faster than average. Students can earn an Associate in Applied Science degree from WDT in two years. Surgical technologists earn a median pay of $20.09 per hour or $41,790 per year.

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WDT named a 2015 Military Friendly School

WDT named a Military Friendly School for fifth straight year

Western Dakota Tech announced today that it has been designated a 2015 Military Friendly School for the fifth consecutive year.

The Military Friendly Schools designation is awarded to the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools in the country that are doing the most to embrace military students and dedicate resources to ensure their success in the classroom and after graduation. The methodology used for making the Military Friendly Schools list has changed the student veteran landscape to one much more transparent, and has played a significant role over the past six years in capturing and advancing best practices to support military students across the country.

WDT has services in place for the 111 enrolled students who classify as active or former service members. "WDT is dedicated to the success of our student veterans, and we take pride in the services we offer. It's an honor to make this list for the fifth year in a row," said Curt Lauinger, WDT's Career Services Coordinator.

The survey captures more than 50 leading practices in supporting military students and is available free of charge to the more than 8,000 schools approved for Post-9/11 GI Bill funding. As in past years, the 2015 Military Friendly Schools results were independently tested by Ernst & Young LLP based upon the weightings and methodology developed by Victory Media with input by its independent Academic Advisory Board.

For more information about WDT's commitment to attracting and supporting military student, contact Curt Lauinger at

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How to reduce test anxiety

Most students experience some level of anxiousness when taking a test, but it is when it interferes with test performance that it is deemed excessive and labeled as 'test anxiety.' Test anxiety is often defined in physiological terms: sweaty palms, going blank, butterflies, lightheadedness and other symptoms that mirror illness.

If you find yourself displaying symptoms of test anxiety, there are methods and tips to follow that can help reduce your stress level.

• Take an honest look at your study skills and develop areas that are weaker to ensure successful learning efficiency. If you are easily distracted, work on focus. If you have trouble making time to study, carve out a study schedule, and stick to it.

• Be prepared. The more time you give yourself to prepare and learn the material the more confident you will feel the day of the exam. Avoid the last minute cram session. The more time you have spent working through the material, the more comfortable you will be with it.

• Keep organized and on task. Keep to a schedule so that you know internally that you gave yourself enough time to study.

• Get enough sleep starting two nights before the exam. Roughly six to eight hours are recommended for the average person, but if you feel better with more, try to get more.

• Keep hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Stress headaches can be set off by dehydration.

• Exercise to help eliminate stress. Even a short daily walk can help to release negative internal tension.

• Eat well balanced meals. Make sure you eat breakfast or lunch before the exam with at least 20 minutes to digest your food. Do not eat greasy foods or drink caffeinated drinks they may upset your stomach.

• Stay relaxed by practicing deep breathing techniques.

On the day of the exam, keep the following tips in mind to reduce test anxiety:

• Give yourself enough time to get to the exam and find a comfortable seat. Get your writing utensils ready (have a few extra on hand) and any paper or supplies that you may need. Take a couple of minutes to close your eyes and take a couple of deep breaths.

• Do not discuss the material with other students who may make you second guess your knowledge of the material.

• Do not bring your class materials with you. Going through the test information at the last second will only make you nervous.

Test anxiety while taking the exam can happen. Stay focused by implementing the following techniques:

• Review the entire exam before answering any questions. Read the instructions twice to be clear on what is expected.

• Occasionally stretch so that your body stays relaxed.

• If your mind goes blank then put your pencil down, sit up straight, take two or three deep breaths, then pick up your pencil again and begin. If you don't immediately recognize the question then go on to the next, and come back to the question that stumped you later.

• Stay positive and remind yourself that you studied appropriately and that you know the material.

• Remind yourself that some anxiety is normal and stay confident that you know the material.

• Try to not pay attention to others movements or if they turn in their exams before you. You do not get points for being the first one to turn in your exam. Take the time that you need to not only stay relaxed, but to give each question the focus it needs.

By following the above tips, you can help to alleviate your test anxiety. With practice, patience, and focus, you can overcome excessive apprehension that you may feel when taking a test. For additional assistance please contact our Student Success Center.

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Community Resource Fair and Part Time Job Fair

iStock_000032209140_SmallWestern Dakota Tech will host the annual Community Resource Fair and Part Time Job Fair from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, September 3, in Wanbli Room ABCD, as well as the Commons and mail hallways.

Students will have the opportunity to discover available community services and visit with part-time job employers.

Organizations participating in the Community Service fair include family and social services, community health and wellness organizations, local parks and law enforcement agencies, and self-help organizations. The Part Time Job Fair participating organizations include representatives from the health service, food service, retail, military, and social service industries.

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