By Nekitia Hyde, MS, BS, RDMS (Ab, Ob/Gyn), RVT
This July I was honored to be the military recipient of the Osborn scholarship and attended my first AHRA conference. All I can say is wow!
If you are a radiology administrator in any manner and you have not attended this conference you owe yourself an apology. It was just the kick I needed to restart my excitement in my career.
My personal background is Navy. After spending 4 years in the Navy I moved on to the healthcare field. I spent 10 years as a sonographer prior to slowly transitioning into leadership. I obtained my bachelor’s in healthcare management and finished my master’s in organizational leadership. I now work as an imaging manager with about 20 years clinical and management on my back.
Becoming a CRA is not needed for my current position therefore, I found myself stagnant and putting it off a couple years. Finally, I applied for the scholarship. I was surprised when I received the call that I was chosen. My excitement continued once I cleared the dates through work.
I can say I enjoyed myself from the kindness that started at registration through the farewell event on our last day. I learned so much and met so many in the radiology field. The volunteers that assisted in each seminar were so helpful and nice. Although masks were optional, it was nice to be amongst people and not online. I met people from all regions, facilities big and small. The major thing I learned is we are all facing the same issues and we are all in this together! The networking following our ongoing pandemic was icing on the cake.
The classes were educational but not monotoned, nor boring. These speakers knew their stuff! The two I enjoyed most were Luann Culbreth and Jason Newmark. Luann sparked fire in me to take the CRA exam. She spoke a couple times during the CRA workshop. Luann reminded us this is stuff we already know, and we just need to focus and just do it! Jason had us entertained and laughing while covering finances. The burden we all face each month doesn’t have to be so painful after all. He broke it down in ways that made it easy for new imaging managers to understand.
There were a few keynote speakers. Although all were great, Risha Grant kept everyone’s attention as she spoke on some of the most uncomfortable “isms” we deal with in society today. Her seminar “Get rid of the BS to build an inclusive culture” kept us all engaged. There were serious moments and then bursts of laughter as we sat and engaged ourselves to understand this matter we all encounter.
The bottom line is if you’ve never attended, take the time to invest in yourself and attend the next AHRA annual meeting. You won’t be disappointed. I have returned back to my real work world with additional knowledge, and I’ve opened my books to start studying for the CRA test. Wish me luck!