This is Where a Bachelor’s Degree Can Take You


The AARC is calling for more therapists to earn a bachelor’s degree. For RTs who need to meet that goal, there is probably no better degree to go after than the BSRC/BSRT degree. Therapists with this degree have demonstrated advanced education, specifically in the field of respiratory care.

Where can a BSRC/BSRT degree take you? Two RTs who have earned the degree share what it’s meant for their careers.

Invaluable to success

“I always knew I wanted to complete my BSRC after I graduated with my AAS in respiratory care in 2010,” said Carla Encarnacion, BSRC, RRT, RRT-NPS. She was living in Bossier City, LA, at the time, and decided to make the move to Houston, TX, where she could enroll in the BSRC program at the University of Texas Medical Branch in nearby Galveston.

She put her AAS degree to good use by working as a therapist throughout the completion program and graduated in December of 2012.

Now, just five years later, she’s managing the respiratory therapy department at the Cleveland Clinic’s Fairview Hospital in Cleveland, OH.

“Having my BSRC was a requirement for this position, and the knowledge I gained by completing my BSRC has helped me in many ways,” Encarnacion said.

She believes she would have struggled with many of the tasks required by her management position had it not been for her BSRC and says the degree has been invaluable in helping her achieve success on the job.

Spurred by 2015 and Beyond

Bobbie Melton, BSRT, RRT, decided to pursue her BSRT degree after the AARC published its findings from the 2015 and Beyond conferences, believing it would be necessary for her to move into the leadership positions she hoped to acquire in her career.

She graduated from the Pima Medical Institute-Tucson in 2011 and is now working as the clinical manager at Memorial Hermann TMC in Houston, TX.

“My bachelor’s degree helped me to meet the job requirements for the position,” Melton said.

Melton says having her bachelor’s in respiratory care has made her feel more confident in her role and it has also helped her understand health care from a broader perspective.

Find a program that’s right for you

BSRC/BSRT programs are available throughout the country, and many of them offer AS to BS completion options and an online format to accommodate working therapists. Find accredited programs on the CoARC website.