A new school year is just around the corner and whether you’re a first year student or one who has already completed part of his or her program, you may be wondering whether it’s worth it to join the AARC. Students who have already done it will tell you the answer to that question is an unequivocal yes.
Exam discount was just the beginning
Thea Bulter is in year one of a two-year RT program at Independence University in Alabama. She joined the AARC early on after one of her instructors suggested all students should take advantage of the great benefits offered by the Association.
“The first thing that caught my attention was student members can get a $40 discount on the NBRC exam,” Butler said.
That alone sold her on the benefits of membership but it was really just the beginning.
“Among all of the great benefits as a student member, the respiratory care news and information benefit is of most value,” Butler said.
First and foremost on her list are AARC Times magazine and the AARC’s science journal, Respiratory Care.
Butler likes the magazine for its news and feature stories, plus the management tips and educational articles it offers. The Journal provides her with an inside look at original research published in her new profession, and she also appreciates the case reports and features on chest x-rays, pulmonary function tests, and blood gas analyses.
“Just like most students, I know that times can get tough and school can become difficult,” she said. “These magazines and journals help me stay focused to my goal in becoming a respiratory therapist and remind me of the bigger picture once completing the respiratory program.”
Already actively involved
Joseph Ariale, RRT, just graduated from the RT program at Trident Technical College in Charleston, SC, and is getting ready to pursue his bachelor’s degree in RT at Newberry College in Newberry, SC, in the spring of 2018. Like a lot of students in proactive programs, joining the AARC was something he initially did simply because it was expected of all students.
“I became a student member in 2016. It was simply the point in the program where every student was signed up to become an AARC member,” Ariale said.
But when he attended the South Carolina Society’s annual conference, the true meaning of membership came shining through.
“I saw what really goes into pushing forward respiratory care on a state level,” he said.
That state conference also introduced him to the AARC Congress, and not only was he there for the 2016 conference in San Antonio, he got the chance to sit in during the House of Delegates meeting.
“That was an incredibly eye-opening experience!” Ariale said.
Those early experiences at his state and national conferences spurred him to get actively involved in his professional organizations. In addition to helping out with the 2017 SCSRC conference, he also traveled to Washington, DC, in April to take part in the AARC’s annual Capitol Hill Lobby Day events.
What are his favorite AARC benefits? Ariale cites AARConnect for the opportunity it gives students to network with so many leaders in the profession, and he also appreciates the financial support the AARC provides to its state societies.
“Your state society allows you to make connections with established RTs in your community, which can be of great benefit when you are looking for employment after graduating and getting your RRT,” Ariale said.