HTM On The Line with BRYANT HAWKINS SR.

Shaping Healthcare Heroes: Dr. Jeff Smoot's Trailblazing Biomedical Equipment Technician Program

January 16, 2024 Bryant Hawkins Sr. Season 2 Episode 1
Shaping Healthcare Heroes: Dr. Jeff Smoot's Trailblazing Biomedical Equipment Technician Program
HTM On The Line with BRYANT HAWKINS SR.
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HTM On The Line with BRYANT HAWKINS SR.
Shaping Healthcare Heroes: Dr. Jeff Smoot's Trailblazing Biomedical Equipment Technician Program
Jan 16, 2024 Season 2 Episode 1
Bryant Hawkins Sr.

Get ready to ignite your passion and elevate your spirit, because we're launching the second season of HTM on the Line Podcast, and it's going to be a groundbreaking journey! To set the stage for an unforgettable season, we're honored to welcome Dr. Jeff Smoot, an esteemed figure in Healthcare Technology Management (HTM). From his early days fueled by a childhood fascination with bioengineering to his transformative work in cardiac IT, Dr. Smoot's path is a testament to the power of curiosity and lifelong learning. At MiraCosta College, he's not just teaching; he's sculpting the future of HTM, blending life lessons with technical competence. His unique approach of 'relaxed intensity' and the emphasis on real-world experiences prepare students for more than just a career – they're being groomed for excellence in high-stress healthcare environments. 

As we explore Dr. Smoot's journey, his insights, and his unparalleled success in guiding students to a 100% graduation rate, we uncover the essence of adaptability, continuous learning, and the impact of hands-on experience in the ever-evolving field of HTM. So, tune in, get inspired, and discover the roadmap to making a significant mark in the vital industry of healthcare technology management.

This podcast is sponsored by The College  of  Biomedical Equipment Technology. You can find out more information about this outstanding institution at CBET.EDU.

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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Get ready to ignite your passion and elevate your spirit, because we're launching the second season of HTM on the Line Podcast, and it's going to be a groundbreaking journey! To set the stage for an unforgettable season, we're honored to welcome Dr. Jeff Smoot, an esteemed figure in Healthcare Technology Management (HTM). From his early days fueled by a childhood fascination with bioengineering to his transformative work in cardiac IT, Dr. Smoot's path is a testament to the power of curiosity and lifelong learning. At MiraCosta College, he's not just teaching; he's sculpting the future of HTM, blending life lessons with technical competence. His unique approach of 'relaxed intensity' and the emphasis on real-world experiences prepare students for more than just a career – they're being groomed for excellence in high-stress healthcare environments. 

As we explore Dr. Smoot's journey, his insights, and his unparalleled success in guiding students to a 100% graduation rate, we uncover the essence of adaptability, continuous learning, and the impact of hands-on experience in the ever-evolving field of HTM. So, tune in, get inspired, and discover the roadmap to making a significant mark in the vital industry of healthcare technology management.

This podcast is sponsored by The College  of  Biomedical Equipment Technology. You can find out more information about this outstanding institution at CBET.EDU.

Support the Show.

Speaker 1:

Get ready to ignite your passion and elevate your spirit, because we're launching the second season of HTM on the line podcast. We're honored to welcome the inspiring Dr Jeff Smoot, illuminary and Healthcare Technology Management Discover out his childhood curiosity and bioengineering evolved into groundbreaking contributions in cardiac IT At Miracosta College. He's not just teaching for transforming lives, blending technical skills with real world scenarios. As we explore Dr Smoot's unparalleled success and guiding students to a 100% graduation rate, we uncover the essence of adaptability, continuous learning and the impact of hands on experience in the ever-evolving field of HTM Tool. It now for a whirlwind of inspiration and innovation in healthcare technology management, jeff, welcome to HTM on the line. How you doing today, sir Great great, great Thank you for having me, man.

Speaker 1:

it's been a long time since we got on here, man. It was 2022 last time we talked.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, you mentioned that. I thought it was. It seemed like for so many time flies, you know, I thought it was man, it was so many nights, but dude said 2022, I'm like wow.

Speaker 1:

Before we get deep into the questions, how about you share with us your journey into the healthcare technology management industry and what inspired you to enter this field?

Speaker 2:

Wow, okay, sir, you talking about going back. Okay, so that's what I was jumping over, because those that can remember, I'm dating myself. There was this program called the $6 million man and I wanted to originally get into bioengineering through artificial limbs and internal organs and different things like that. So I was always kind of interested in it. How about? I didn't know this field existed and what happened was that by chance I wound up going to school for bioengineering, found out I really didn't like it, and those doctors that basically do the artificial limbs and things like researchers, phds, mds and different things, you know, they came out with this thing called a Jarvik 7, which was like the first one, you know, in Utah, and so that's why I kind of sparked the interest. But as time went on, I basically got into the Navy Reserves and they had a program called ramp which they basically would take you you send you to regular civilian school and to basically get a associate's degree, and I picked bio medical engineering, which is what biomedical technology, because that's what I wanted to do. So I got into it and it was about 1988 actually, you know. So I was a reservist and got my training kind of like civilian, but I was still serving time in the Navy and had that designation and so from there I just started just to kind of like grow, and that was in Chicago and that's where I'm originally from.

Speaker 2:

Later on, I moved down into Atlanta, georgia, right before the Olympics and started working for a healthcare system down there. And you know I was excited to go back to school for my bachelor's degree and I started I was in IT and what happened was that basically, they were starting a new cardiac program, cardiac IT, a BACS and so, by chance, I was kind of like thrown into that a Thresden ad not thrown into it, but thrusted into it. And there was a blessing in the sky because that's where I really got my PACS and IT and started kind of going to different avenues of biomed and different things and still associated with biomed, of course, but I was just doing some more things like with cardiology and specializing in that. And then, you know, fast forward kind of school went on and in 2018, I had the opportunity basically to start a program in Maricosta College in Carlsbad, california, and they looked for an instructor.

Speaker 2:

I heard and I got you know, having a just interview, and they said we want you and now you just have to create the program, because we don't have anything. So and that's who fast forwarded where I'm at now. 2018 was when it started, and so I've been there ever since. You know, took a break for a little bit, but I came back, and so I enjoyed it.

Speaker 1:

Maricosta, that's where you say you're teaching biomed program. Is it an associate program? What type of program you're teaching?

Speaker 2:

What's the certificate program? And this is one of the only programs I know of. That might be more now, but it is basically funded by the Department of Labor Back. President Obama created the America's Promise funding, which was to get America's back working in different things, and so that's where pretty much the funding came from.

Speaker 2:

And the person who kind of like ran into Linda Kaurakawa, which I'm giving her a price she was basically the one that started a program with the advice of Tony loudly and Mimi loudly Some of you all know them and they basically mentioned the biomedical program and she was like really, so she looked into it and that's kind of like how the program started. So it's a 16 week program. I'm the only instructor and I basically take them through from electronics, anatomy and physiology to medical equipment, to going to the Etovus Triangle, I go into bio potentials, all different types of things, and basically to get them trained as BMAT ones. So it's about 440 hours total, which is equivalent to like an associate degree in hours. But all they're getting during this 440 hours is strictly bio-med. So that's kind of how the program works.

Speaker 1:

And it's like you're inside my head. You answered my next three questions without me even asking.

Speaker 2:

Sorry.

Speaker 1:

That's fine. How would you describe your demographic makeup of your program in terms of the students' age, gender and, I guess, diversity among the students? What is that like?

Speaker 2:

So I would guess probably the average age is probably about 30, I would say so you have some that are older, some that are younger, majority of course male, but women are starting to get more into it, which is great. The range as far as education level ranges from a stay-at-home mom who's been there for 20 years who wanted to get in the bio-med to a ex-orthopedic surgeon a couple of cohorts I had to go. So ex-orthopedic surgery was in the program. She got out of it years ago because she wasn't like what she really liked and she sat in my class and went to the program, which was interesting because it was got a pressure decision where. That's where I really knew how much old point I was to different things in medical because she's ex-orthopedic surgeon. So it was pretty good. It's great to finally see that.

Speaker 2:

So it varies, but I would say the majority of I've personally trained there's been about 170 that's total went through the program. I've trained about 106 of them through the Maricosa program. So very fortunate to change people's lives and this is all different types of makeup. It's amazing really, with just the tracks I had a gentleman who came from Philadelphia this past cohort so he basically saw the program online. He was an automotive, but couldn't do that anymore and he packed up everything and was in the Airbnb and hotels for 16 weeks and now he's in Cincinnati. He's working as a biomass. So just talk to him earlier actually, actually, so so yeah.

Speaker 1:

So that's kind of like the makeup. Wow, that's great man. Now just for our listeners, just in case explain you said cohort. What does that mean? When you say cohort? I know what it means, but I want you to explain it to our listeners. When you say cohort, referring to your class, yes, the cohort is basically the class.

Speaker 2:

I mean cohort 12, starting January 22. So class 12, class 11, class 10. So we just use cohort instead of just class. So it's the 12th class of biomedical technicians.

Speaker 1:

Wow, so you say you've graduated 106. So what would you say your graduation rate is for your program? Percentage.

Speaker 2:

So my graduation rate is 100%.

Speaker 1:

Really Everybody that started always finished.

Speaker 2:

Yes, they always finished, you know, I haven't had any to drop, any to quit.

Speaker 1:

Oh, that's great.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and this is good. I try to give them life lessons as well as Biomed. So you know, they have an experience, but they have things to take a take with them and apply just after a couple of life, you know.

Speaker 1:

So that's what I try to do, so I'm interested, ok so we're on cohort 12, you said, I think, or yes, sir, yeah. Now what would that first day of class be like for your cohort 12? Coming into the classroom, how would you greet the kids? Well, students, because they're probably not kids.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so the first part of the. You know they intro themselves. How did they get in the program? How did they hear about the program you know, you know told them about it, or how they found out. Once we get through with that part right there, then then I give them the final test.

Speaker 1:

On the first day.

Speaker 2:

The first day I give them a final test. You know, and of course they don't know it, you know. But I want them to realize that they don't know, that we kind of drops the guards down sometimes, you know, or a lot of times it does, because you know they can always look at them, remember that test they got, you know. I give them probably three points for their name and probably three points for the date.

Speaker 1:

So Now let me you have your case there. I think you said it was a six month program.

Speaker 2:

No 16, week Six.

Speaker 1:

OK, four month program. So now in those four months, do you kid? Do your students have any hands on training with, like maybe some medical equipment in your class? So what's in your classroom?

Speaker 2:

OK, so in my classroom I have I have monitors, test electrical safety analyzers, I have deep field analyzer, ekg simulation, patient simulators. So I have test equipment to send there. I've been fortunate with that and I also have different equipment that's been donated and bought. You know, patient monitor to three defibrillators, small surge of stat ESU piece of equipment. So I have kind of like a good variety of it. You know a good variety of EKG machines. Also Mach 5500s, light sources, alleris, pumps, have a you know a little range of things that can basically learn on, and so when I basically get them in I try to because we have in this program.

Speaker 2:

Let me back up a little bit. This program basically has an internship to say collaboration with some of the hospitals. You know UCSD scripts where the students are going to do 120 hours of internship. You know, under another bio mid of course, the hospitals accepted programs pretty well established and so they pick their days kind of like when they could go in, because the program is Monday, tuesday, wednesday, so Thursday and Friday they can go to one of the hospitals and do an internship for 120 hours.

Speaker 2:

So it's imperative for me because what I wanted to do was in the beginning I used to put the internship at the back end of the program when they were almost finished, and they do an internship, but that didn't give them an opportunity to come back and ask questions or talk about different things they experienced. So I now, within the first probably six weeks, five weeks they're going to be doing it, they're going to start the internship. So it's imperative that the beginning and this is basically to kind of like capture your interests, because I've given them the final test the first day they're probably within that week I'll have them doing something like teach them how to wire plug you know, electrical safety, how to wire plugs, so that I have plugs that they can wire and learn how to do that. And this is something that I'll emphasize as time goes on, you know, instead of just doing it one time, they're doing it all during the cohort and so they're able to get exposed really to like the first week of class they actually are doing something to the bio med.

Speaker 1:

What are the key skills first that you really maybe teach them, that you really focus on? If you can name a few of them, Okay.

Speaker 2:

So if I'm talking about soft skills, okay, communications, you know how to talk. You have to have an even temper. You got to. Really, you know bio med depends on where you're at. It could be stressful. Well, probably anywhere you're at in bio med it has its moments Okay. So I try to teach them and emphasize about having an even temper. You know, don't panic, you know it's going to.

Speaker 2:

You know, when we go to these site visits which we do, there's a lot of equipment in the shop. You don't have to know everything the first day, okay, because sometimes they get in there they kind of overwhelm. So I kind of teach them. It's all in time, take your time. You know learning. But as far as the actual skills in bio med, I emphasize, there are no tests equipment because monitors can change everything. But you'll know how to do electrical safety. You know how to hook up a patient simulator, you know. And so that's one of the things I really, because it's training for entry level B-Met once, and so I'm not getting into anesthesia, I'm not getting into ventilators, because entry level they're probably more than likely not going to be touching that for a few years. So my key emphasis is you'll know test equipment. If you don't know anything else, you're going to know test equipment, and so that's what I emphasize all during the program. Pretty much that.

Speaker 1:

Okay, now you mentioned that you've been doing this, for this would be like your 12 class that you're doing, or the 12 class in the program period.

Speaker 2:

The program I personally did. This would be my eighth eighth class I personally taught, but it's been 12 total.

Speaker 1:

The HTM industry is evolving and changes every day. How, in particular, would you say that your program probably have evolved from the first cohort you had to the eighth cohort? What would you say? Maybe have been some adjustments you've made in how you instructed your class.

Speaker 2:

Okay, well, one of the first adjustments I made was when I first started in cohort one. You know, I'm old school so I'm used to, you know, look up something, get your laptops out. And you know, let's look up something, you know whether it's a test procedure, service manual, whatever. And they popped out their cell phones. I was like, well, you know, put your cell phones up, we're not gonna be doing it. You know, there's nothing with the cell phones. They said, well, Dr Smoot, this is how we look up things on cell phone.

Speaker 2:

So I had to have a paradigm shift in my teaching, because I'm used to, you know, get on a laptop, get on the computer, you know, and they like, no, we can see everything on that small writing, and so that's what they. So that's one of the shifts I had to do. Another shift is it, as time goes on, because I basically I do outside of teaching, I do a lot of research and reading and I'm in VR and augmented reality and artificial intelligence. Then I have to kind of like, now start adapting the program to where it's addressing those type of things. Okay, because that's what they're gonna be exposed to Really getting the IT teaching, my IT and the basics.

Speaker 2:

You know how to ping command prompt, how to basically kind of troubleshoot, see if something's on the network, different things like that. So they will at least know how to speak the language you know. So when they need to put a EKG machine on the network and I say to IT, give me those number things, you know, that means I, you know it's called an IP address, you know. So I try to give them the knowledge to where they can at least speak the language to be successful in a bio-med career. So that's what I do.

Speaker 2:

So I had to change and it's constantly evolving, you know it's constantly evolving with different things. It's different things I read about and integrations and all types of. So it's I'm always trying to, you know, to evolve and get them involved in things that's gonna be in the future too, you know. So I've introduced in VR headsets. So now they do a module in VR headsets, you know, and so it's been an ongoing thing, and so it gets to a point sometime where the 16 weeks is packed, you know, with stuff and so they get a chance to experience some things.

Speaker 1:

Explain what you mean by they get exposed to VR headsets, which I'll watch videos, or how do you expose them to the VR headsets?

Speaker 2:

Well, I've been fortunate to have a to do some storyboarding and some creation of some of the test models, some of the modules, but in VR lab, and so that's where the VR headsets come from.

Speaker 2:

Inside of those there's different modules for doing a PM on a DFIP EKG, machine, suction regulator, different things to whether the students could put on the headsets and be immersed in that world. And it takes them through how to do a Medrat injector, whether you take loose and you have two handpieces and you're actually immersed in it just like you're in the room and you're actually taking apart, unscrewing different things, and so this way they're getting exposed to that and now they can physically go and they can do something like that, you know, cause they've kind of like got the PM down for doing it. So of course it's never a first time, but this is really something for them to be able to expose and to kind of see. You know how a DFIP, how do you do a PM on a DFIP, even though we physically do it, but they're able to see it in the virtual world, you know, which is really helpful.

Speaker 1:

As your kids get close to finishing the program, what type of advice do you give to your students that can prepare them for a career in HTM? I know you mentioned some soft skills. What advice do you give to your students to prepare them?

Speaker 2:

One of the main things is that you don't know everything You're going to. You know. You know people that know what you're trying to learn. You know and so take your time, don't panic. This is. It can be overwhelming because of all of the equipment that they feel like they have to learn, but somebody that's really seasoned, like you know, like ourselves, me and you we've been in it for a while, so it's over a period of time you learn it. So I teach them about you know. Just, you know, take your time and learn. And you know, try to have an even attitude.

Speaker 2:

I wouldn't say anger level, which you're not going to have, but try to really become on a job because you can. You're going to deal with doctors, you're going to deal with nurses. You're going to deal with, you know, people that you know. Some feel like they're God and they're going to talk to you anyway, but you got to have an even gear. You know, and that's the main thing I emphasize to them. I call it relaxed intensity. You know, and that's one thing they need to develop is a relaxed intensity about what they do, because you can get called up into surgery and you go there and they in the middle of a case and the monitor's out. You know you got to be able to deal with that because they expect you to understand. You know they expect you to get it fixed and so I try to really keep them, telling them to have an even temperament about everything they do, you know.

Speaker 1:

And I guess it has to be challenging in a way because you have that years of experience. So I guess you may have to almost pull yourself back because you might want to just keep going on and then you find yourself maybe going over the head. So I guess that takes discipline on your part when you're teaching them, to keep it out of even keel so they can digest it.

Speaker 2:

I'm getting people that never touch a screwdriver and in 16 weeks I got to get them to buy them edge, you know, entry level one. And I mean some of them never know what a circuit is. They don't even know what I'm talking about, you know. So I have to kind of tailor make my teaching to where everybody gets it you know and nobody's bored, you know. I guess that's the best way to say it. Wow, that could be real challenging.

Speaker 1:

If you have an orthopedic surgeon then you have someone who never touched it and I'm more than sure, a lot of your students probably going through career changes. So some may have a lot of experience in the working industry but some may have zero. So I can see where that might be a challenge because they probably have different levels of experience in life and as far as technology or technical, that could be a challenge I can see.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, see, so I have to really. Yeah, it's kind of like you know, you got people that do electronics, you got companies maybe, and they go on for another career change and you know, what I really get them at is basically when I really start talking about biomedical equipment, because that's one thing I know they don't know. I know they don't know that, so you know, no matter where they are. Orthopedic surgeon, yeah, they know medical equipment, but they don't really know it like we do it, you know. So I really you know, that's where it kind of like you kind of rub a history board and they have to kind of submit to what I'm teaching them, you know, because they don't know. So it's a challenge but it's fun. I welcome the challenge all the time. So, yes, that's great.

Speaker 1:

Now, you mentioned earlier about your site visits. Could you speak more on what type of site visits you were speaking of that you do with your kids, your students, right?

Speaker 2:

Okay, so what we basically do is we had a couple of hospitals UCSD in San Diego, we got Scripps, kaiser and their nominee, gracious, has given us side visits and we all the students, we meet there and they basically show us biomass. So, in essence, if there's like, say, for instance, 10 technicians in the shop, then usually they break up in groups and they just go and spend five minutes with each section. You know, each area, you know, and the technicians talk about it day to day and they can ask some questions and all types of stuff. You know. The site visits basically for the purpose for me personally is, first of all, they get to see where biomass really is in action, okay, the real situation. Secondly, they get to ask questions and they see different things and you know everybody's got different questions. And then, lastly, they start seeing the equipment that we got in the in the room which solidifies what I've been teaching them. You know, and we all you know biomass, always kind of thinking like you know in the whole industry, and so they start mentioning the different technicians mentioned certain things that I've said and all they do is look back at me like, yeah, he's right, you know, there's one thing when I'm saying it. But when somebody else is saying it and I didn't like you, or Tell them, hey, say this here and they just sit on their own, they're really like, wow, hmm, and Dr Smoot, yeah, that's correct what he said. This person just said the same thing, you know. So it's really, it's really gratifying and I tried to my idea.

Speaker 2:

My goal is to have site visits at hospitals and manufacturers and maybe some, you know, third-party service so they can see that there's, you know, biomass is just not in the hospital. You know you can do field service, you can do bench repair someplace. You know, in a manufacturer you can do different things. So I try to really expose them to all that, because some people not cut out for the hospital you know hospitals not for everybody, you know and some people want to deal with all that, so they can still kind of like have the same appreciation for the field but not have to deal with some of the things that a hospital will present to them. So and we and occasionally, which has only been two classes, last class and the second class we had the opportunity to tour the US Navy Hospital, ship Mercy, just here in San Diego, and so that's really something when they see that they're really, they're really amazed, you know. So it's been great.

Speaker 1:

Man, your program is pretty in-depth. You pack a lot into these few weeks, I would say, compared to a regular barbed program. And let's say this when it comes to your kid students I keep calling them kids man what type of regulatory or ethics compliance do you share with them, because that's going to be important for them also?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, we talk about NFPA 99, we talk about HIPAA, we touch our nose, especially NFPA 99, you know, to my electrical safety and different things like that, because they I try to always emphasize the origin of different things. You know, and that's where, because if you kind of understand how things are working then you can see the importance of different regulations and different things you know. So I talk about electrical safety and how that's very important and you know why, how it started, you know, with good old Ralph Nader had a tiny thing presented and made it.

Speaker 2:

It didn't start but he basically made the awareness there. And so you know, I try to really emphasize the different HIPAA. You got to really watch HIPAA. You got to watch your in hospitals. You're going to see things that you know, that people don't see. You know, and it's important that you're ethical, that you're, because, like I mentioned earlier, even keel, even temperament, and you understand that what you see there you don't go out and talk about it. You know and so you know because that's it could be a major issue, especially HIPAA, and it could cost you in the long run.

Speaker 2:

So I try to really get into it. As far as the regulations talk about some ISO, talk about OSHA and inspections, different things, the fortunate thing about the program is they do get an OSHA 10 certification, so that's included in the program. So they come, osha, comes in and for two days they get them certified in that and they get a lean also lean certification. So when they come out they have a company that's going to be a company. So when they come out they have a couple of little certifications, you know, along with the certificate of biomancy. So so you know. So I try to definitely emphasize some of the regulations and different things.

Speaker 1:

We're getting close to the end of the program and your kids are graduating. Do y'all have like a graduation program for them?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, we have graduation. When they get close to graduation, of course they're excited. They don't know what to expect, you know, and I show up in my cabin gown so they can see it, and so that is one thing is one of the best parts of the program. To me is a graduation, and I said I was going to do this and I should have done this from the very beginning. This cohort I'm going to take a picture of them the first day.

Speaker 2:

I'm going to take the picture from the last day. That's pretty cool. See how much difference they've made. You know that type of thing.

Speaker 1:

So that's awesome, that's what we do. And do you take pictures when you go to your site, business and stuff like that?

Speaker 2:

Yes, absolutely, that's right, man.

Speaker 1:

You can do like a little slideshow graduation video man.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, that's what I need to. Yeah, maybe I can help, maybe I can help you with that, and I'd be.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, definitely it would be pretty cool at the end from day one and throughout the program and things like that, and you do some video. That'd be a great little thing at the end of the year we could put together for them. That would be pretty great.

Speaker 2:

Well, hold you to that.

Speaker 1:

I got to keep one on you, man. That way I have you always be a dead to me, you know. Let me ask you this when it comes I know you're very active in CMA Do you, do you expose your cohorts to the association program? Well, meetings, rather.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, absolutely, I try to and it's. It's great whenever there's, like you know, cma, of course is doing a time, and that's one of the things I kind of like every size to them, that they need to come to a meeting. I'm the vice president of chapter San Diego, so I say because I'm there, you're my students, you're on the show, they're meeting, you know. So that's one thing. But there's a couple of times I've been fortunate to where the MD Expo has been in Pachanga, here in Temecula, and they went there and that really locks them in. The big CMA we're having, actually the 18th in Anaheim. I've invited my students to come there, even though class starts that following Monday.

Speaker 2:

But whenever they see certain things like this, they realize the industry is much bigger than what they even expected. They had no idea how big it was. But when they start seeing people, their, their future colleagues and different things, they're like, wow, man, this is a real, this is a real industry here. Then they start wondering how come I ever heard about this, just like everybody does. Yeah, sure, well, I've heard about this. This is amazing, you know.

Speaker 2:

So that really locks them in when they come to some of those events. So I try to expose them as much as possible. If there's anything in the area, I try my best to get them to come and different things like that and that introducing the people. And they come to the meetings they get chance to meet local bio man. You know in the San Diego area and they're really in. I can't say enough about the bio man HCM industry from you to you know the president, amy and Daniel, because there's support I can. It couldn't program, couldn't exist without a lot of support from other people. It would be very hard. So I appreciate that support is everything you know really.

Speaker 1:

Man. They don't realize how privileged or blessed they are to be able to go to an association. Oh, I have my technicians that work with me never been to one. I mean, we don't even have an association in Louisiana, so just the fact that they can be exposed to that before they even get into the industry is awesome. I mean, that's that's commendable, that you exposing them to that. That's also probably a great teaching lesson when you get back to class.

Speaker 2:

So as time goes on in the program, of course they become more and more interested and they start in the beginning they don't know where they can do it. I don't know if I can do this here. It looks kind of. But then they actually start saying man, they actually start believing that they could do it and I've been fortunate enough to where they've gotten jobs before the program was even ended.

Speaker 1:

A month before they had a job.

Speaker 2:

So that's been great, but to just expose them to it it really makes a difference. And that's why I say about any program out there, if you can get them to get the students going to a hospital, just to see how it runs, what's going, you know it really makes a big difference in the. It makes an impact on the students.

Speaker 1:

You say, your graduation rate is 100%.

Speaker 2:

What is your job?

Speaker 1:

placement percentage for your graduates.

Speaker 2:

It's a San Diego. They don't want to leave San Diego. They want to, they want to, they want a job here.

Speaker 2:

You know, and I always emphasize, you got to start broadening your rises. You really get. Get employed. The ones that have reached out and have done that, it's really a hundred percent, you know, because they get a job with no problem. But the ones that want to stay in San Diego wait for something to happen. You know they might be waiting, you know what I mean, because there's only so many hospitals in San Diego, so many bio-meds, you know so so many bio-meds slots. So I'm now emphasizing I have been emphasizing, but more than ever, because the opportunity is much greater is to, hey, brown your horizon, don't be.

Speaker 2:

You know, go get the experience. You know. You know, go someplace. You know, even if you go to LA, you know, which is a hundred miles, you're getting the experience or something. But just hoping you get a job right down the street from your house is, you know, I mean it could happen. But you know a lot of people want that, you know. So people who did one of the work, I say is easy, it's a hundred percent, they get the job. They say, look, I'm going to get something. They go, and I have people all over the country They've done that. You know the ones that want to sit in the home and want to wait for something. You know I say they don't work at all, so until something pops up, you know, so that type of thing. But I always emphasize see, this is a 12 class, so you got 11 classes and looking for a job right in San Diego probably just like you, you know and so you have to broaden your horizons, especially now. It's opportunities wide open in the HCM industry. It's wide open.

Speaker 1:

I want to ask you some personal questions while I have you here. Smooth, I know you were involved with your association of CMI, but do you do any work with other associations around the country? Do you have any involvement with them?

Speaker 2:

Well, yeah, some occasion I get invited to come speak there. You know speak in a couple places, and this man was past year. I was in Omaha, nebraska, spoke there at the Heartland, it was great. I have something coming up in a couple of weeks in Ohio. So occasionally I get invited to come speak in different places. I've been on the board of the Georgia Biomedical Society Instrumentation Society of G-Best for a couple of years and then I kind of resigned from that because I'm here pretty much a lot more than ever in Georgia. So so I get involved with other associations and anybody needs help or wants to help or wants me to do anything, I'm always glad to help out. That's another problem. You know the industry is wide open and so they need any type of encouragement, help, advice, whatever. You know I'm there for them.

Speaker 1:

So right, that's commendable. Oh, I appreciate your time, dr Smooth. It's always a pleasure talking with you and spending time with you. I look forward to spending time with you next week at CMI, hopefully, hopefully, you'll bless me with some time. You know you're a popular guy. But, in conclusion, I would like for you to share some advice, knowledge for not only the new ones in the industry. But well, let's take them. Since you deal with both sides, give some advice for someone that's new, coming into the industry first, and then give some advice to someone that's been in the industry. What advice would you give them?

Speaker 2:

Well, I would say, you know it's a HCM is a very rewarding field, you know, and it's what you make it. You come in and sometimes things are repetitious, but there's so many avenues that are being created daily to where opportunities are going to exist and going to grow and going to be presented. You know, and the thing is you got to keep educating yourself, keep striving, keep being prepared, because when opportunity comes, it's not a matter of you know if it's going to come, it's when it's going to come, and you have to be prepared. And so I always say keep educating yourself, keep you know, get in and try and gravitate towards something you really enjoy, because that will present an opportunity for you that you say how do I get in this? And it's just, you're ready for it, it presented itself. So you just got to keep educating yourself and just keep learning. I mean, it's it never ends as far as learning, so keep going.

Speaker 1:

Great advice. And now for the season BioMed or HTN Professional, what advice could you give to them?

Speaker 2:

Well, I kind of like to say, on the back end of that the season by way don't become bored, because there's a lot of different opportunities out here. Because you have experience, because you have the temperament to work in the hospital or work in the field, or been in the field, or this field service, whether it's bench, whether it's in the hospital or manufacturer, you are somebody that is in a industry that is going to always need you Okay, and your expertise. And so don't be bored and don't be. There's nothing here, because when I first got in the industry, I didn't intend on being in order to retire. I just want to do something that, if I ever got to work for somebody, I don't have to dig ditches and then run with that. That's what you want to do. That wasn't me.

Speaker 2:

And so fair 100, turning the full circle, I'm back in it. I'm still in it. I'm back in it for now than ever before, because I only saw it at the beginning me doing PMs, safety checks, income ins, learn something, working in a hospital, but there's so many other avenues that are being created and when you get in there, you're like, oh yeah, I've seen everything, but there's so much out there, you just got to just keep on learning. Keep on learning because there's a lot of opportunity, because you do have the experience. A lot more doors open up for you, great advice.

Speaker 1:

Now this question just popped in my head while you were talking Can you share maybe one or two success stories from your cohorts that's been through the program and out there? You mentioned that some already have jobs and are working. Could you share one success story? I wonder when that this bitch is so proud about one of your graduates?

Speaker 2:

Let's see here, wow. Well, I'm not going to mention names because I got a bunch of case, but I have a. There's one person, one young lady came out of my first cohort and she basically just took an opportunity, kind of like in Northern California, became good, she just stand for now. I guess I gave it away because I said Stanford, but she's a Stanford now doing well, she also, but go ahead.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I was like what's that? But you know it's not the program, but that's one of really. You know she certified now so it's already out, but she is doing well in the industry and that's just one of. I just said they're off the top but they I have so many of them G and University of New Mexico and Albuquerque and Siemens and I got them all over, so there's not really that's just one of my head on the top, but all of them are successful. I'm proud of all of my students.

Speaker 1:

And let me get you a little. I'll share one I just saw recently on LinkedIn and he was mentioning how, when he got to this account, they had a number of broken beds and he made a goal to you know, you know where I'm going with this. You want to continue it. You want to finish it?

Speaker 2:

Oh yeah, but this guy came out of I can't remember Corcoran 9 or something like that, and he it's funny because how he got the job he basically was like in class. Somebody called him and he stepped out of the class and talk and you know, he came back and I said so how did it go? He said I think I got a job. I said what do you mean? The person talked to me and they said, okay, everything's good. You know, you got good experience and I'm going to have the person to call you and give you a job offer. I said, yeah, well, you probably got the job, you know.

Speaker 2:

So he went in and started working, doing these beds and just learning just a sponge. And, just like that story said on LinkedIn, he had his goal when he got in was to zero out the beds and it took him. He's been out about a year and a half, I think. I think maybe two years, and he accomplished that goal, you know, and he was so proud, but that was one that sat there and, like man, I don't know if I could do this. You know, you know, and he actually he did it. You know, he's doing he's, he's knocking out the field, he's killing it.

Speaker 1:

And that's a true testament to your program, because a lot of people hate working on hospital beds and for him to have that positive attitude, to go in there and put a goal before him and accomplish the goal. I was excited for him, honestly, so I know you probably was bubbling over with joy.

Speaker 2:

There's another guy, just kind of like that, who was in the grocery industry for over 30 years and he got through the program, started working on beds and he's, like you know, the bed technician. He's happy to be in the field. Look, I'm as happy to be in this. So I don't. I bet these groceries. I mean 30 years man, I love it and I see him every time we do a site visit show because he works in one of the hospitals. But it is really, you know, it's really gratifying to see that.

Speaker 1:

I don't understand the hate for hospital beds. I mean, that's one of the most important pieces of medical equipment in the hospital.

Speaker 2:

That in regards to what you say.

Speaker 1:

I need problems Exactly.

Speaker 2:

I need problems to be just like. Everything gotta happen. They gotta have beds. If you got a house, why are you gonna not have beds? What are you gonna do, Sam? You gotta have beds.

Speaker 1:

Well, I appreciate you, dr Smooth man. Anytime you want to come back on, feel free. The door is always open to you and maybe we can brainstorm and maybe we can figure out some kind of way to get you, get one of your kids, a couple of your kids on one time, but never so. I think that'd be pretty good man admit way to the program and see how they're doing.

Speaker 2:

And we can, that's pretty good. Yeah, it'd be real good. You know, get some in the past and the present man.

Speaker 1:

That's not good man. You can have like a little mini-class reunion or something like that. Yeah Go, heart reunion. Well, all right. Well, thank you once again, I appreciate you, man. Until we meet again, take care of yourself, sir.

Speaker 2:

Hey, thank you very much, and you keep doing what you're doing. You're doing a fantastic job. All right, I listen to your. I listen to your cast all the time they see him on the line and I always open them up in the morning. I always play some of your. He's gonna like a little too many snippets of fantastic, and then you're doing a great job. You keep doing what you're doing.

Speaker 1:

I appreciate that, brother.

Speaker 2:

We appreciate you out here, man so.

Speaker 1:

Thank you, appreciate you, thank you.

Inspiring Success in Healthcare Technology Management
Evolution of a Biomedical Technician Program
Preparing Students for Careers in HTM
Biomancy Training Site Visits and Regulations
Healthcare Technology Professionals Advice
Success Stories From Program Graduates