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North Oaks School of Radiologic Technology Honors 50th Graduating Class

  • Category: Media Release
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: Melanie Zaffuto

The 50th graduating class members of the North Oaks School of Radiologic Technology celebrated their accomplishments with a ceremony and reception June 27.

seated, from left) London Raborn of Walker, Meghan Matherne of Slidell, Brianna Foster of Albany, Jennifer Gresse of St. Rose, Kristin Smith of Springfield, Taylor Miley of Denham Springs, (standing, from left) Madeleine Duhon of Lafayette, Meggy Worth of Hammond, Stuart Tournillon of Ponchatoula, Josh Maggio of Kentwood and Ashley Perrault of New Roads.

Graduates include: (seated, from left) London Raborn of Walker, Meghan Matherne of Slidell, Brianna Foster of Albany, Jennifer Gresse of St. Rose, Kristin Smith of Springfield, Taylor Miley of Denham Springs, (standing, from left) Madeleine Duhon of Lafayette, Meggy Worth of Hammond, Stuart Tournillon of Ponchatoula, Josh Maggio of Kentwood and Ashley Perrault of New Roads.

Commencement was held in the E. Brent Dufreche Conference Center, located within North Oaks Diagnostic Center.

North Oaks Health System’s Chief Human Resources Officer Jeff Jarreau presided over the ceremony that concluded two years of study for the students involving 2,000 clinical hours and more than 1,200 classroom hours and 400 exams and quizzes.

Sandy Miller, daughter of Dr. Red Stuart, spoke to the school’s 50-year history. Stuart was North Oaks’ first and only radiologist for many years and is considered the founding father of North Oaks School of Radiologic Technology.

In the early 1960s, Stuart was finding it challenging to recruit radiologic technologists to work on the Northshore. As Miller tells it, her father approached the hospital administrator at the time, Sister Mary Aloysius, with the idea of starting a school to address the shortage. She agreed, provided that necessary applications were secured through the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT) and that Stuart hold himself personally responsible for all costs associated with the school, which he did for many years until the school found solid footing.

Over the course of its 50-year history, Miller recounted how the school has evolved in tandem with the field of radiology by comparing and contrasting the environment in which the first and current graduating classes trained.

In 1969, the first graduating class of three students trained in a 60-bed hospital in one modality—X-rays. Films were developed by hand and dried on clips then.

This year’s graduating class of 11 trained in a health system with 330 beds and eight diagnostic modalities—X-ray, Nuclear Medicine, Ultrasound, Mammography, Interventional Radiology, CT, MRI and PET. Now, images are digital, and they are viewed and shared via electronic health record technology.

The commencement address was delivered by Sandy Miller’s husband, Dr. J.P. Miller, who is a radiologist with North Oaks Imaging Associates.

“Your chosen field is the basis for all advancements in imaging,” Miller affirms. “Just think. … Without world-class imaging, medical teams would not have the internal information about their patients needed to properly diagnose and treat them.”

He went on to encourage the graduates to always keep in mind the critical role that life-long learning plays in their continued success and the future of medicine.

“Life-long learning really is the ultimate sport,” he noted. “Your knowledge and ideas are valuable, so make a promise to never stop learning and always remember the ultimate mission – to keep moving yourselves and health care ahead.”

As added motivation, Miller pointed to the age-old advice of St. Francis of Assisi, “Start by doing what’s necessary, then do what’s possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”

Before the presentation of diplomas by Program Director Marsha J. Talbert, outstanding achievement awards were given. The Academic Achievement Award was presented to Worth for obtaining the highest overall scholastic average, and the Performance and Attitude Award for exceptional performance in the clinical setting was given to Foster. Dr. Rodney Taylor presented the Dannye Young Taylor “Always Remembering Others Award,” named in honor of his wife, to Miley in recognition of her outstanding patient care skills. Taylor also delivered the invocation, while Lisa Raney and Edith Slaton of the Auxiliary of Gideons International presented Bibles for medical professionals to the graduates.

In addition, Duhon, Foster, Gresse, Maggio, Matherne, Perrault, Smith, Tournillon and Worth were recognized as members of Lambda Nu, a national honor society for the radiologic and imaging sciences. To become a member, one must maintain a 3.0 cumulative grade-point average out of a possible 4.0.

Established in 1967, the North Oaks School of Radiologic Technology is accredited by JRCERT. The school offers a comprehensive 24-month program that provides classroom and clinical instruction to prepare students for careers in the field of diagnostic imaging, which is used to diagnose and treat diseases and injuries. Upon graduation, students are eligible to take the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) National Certification examination and apply for Louisiana state licensure.

Applications for the 2020-22 class will be accepted through June 1, 2020. To request an application, call or write: Program Director, North Oaks School of Radiologic Technology, P.O. Box 2668, Hammond, Louisiana, 70404, (985) 230-7805.