Surgical Technology


The role of the Surgical Technologist is to provide quality patient care while preparing the operating room for surgical cases. You'll help maintain a sterile environment and remain next to the patient during surgery. You will pass surgical instruments to the surgeon and anticipate the surgeon's needs—you may even put your hand directly in a patient's body during some surgeries. A career in the operating room is never dull, and being a strong team player is a must for a surgical technologist.

The Surgical Technology Program consists of hands-on training at the highest level. You can be confident in your surgical technology education from ECC because our staff and instructors are qualified and supportive. Graduates pass the national certification exam at a much higher rate than the national average. 92 percent of the 2017 class passed the NBSTSA's certification exam to become Certified Surgical Technologists on the first attempt.

How long does it take to become a surgical technologist?

For Surgical Technology students, this is a 2-year AAS certification program. ECC will prepare you for this exciting career with a combination of classroom, laboratory, and clinical experiences in area hospitals. Plus, students in the program receive career development help with resume writing, the national certification exam (held on campus), and job interviewing skills. Afterward, you'll be ready for a job as a CST, scrub tech, surgical technologist, or operating room technician to help medical staff before, during, and after operational procedures at area hospitals and surgery centers.

Surgical Technology Plan of Study and Course Descriptions

Review the ECC catalog for details about the surgical technology plan of study and course descriptions.

Associate of Applied Science

Basic Certificate

Getting a Job as a Certified Surgical Technologist

Surgical technologists are needed throughout hospitals in the Northern Illinois region, and the Surgical Technology Department regularly posts job opportunities for students. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that Surgical Tech jobs will grow by 9 percent by 2030. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Surgical Technologists, (accessed December 7, 2021). You can find the median wage for surgical technologists on Elgin's Career Coach site.

  • Cardiothoracic surgery
  • Colon and rectal surgery
  • General surgery
  • Gynecology and obstetrics
  • Neurosurgery
  • Oncology
  • Ophthalmic surgery
  • Orthopedic surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Pediatric surgery
  • Plastic and maxillofacial surgery
  • Podiatry surgery
  • Urology
  • Vascular surgery

What do surgical technologists do?

  • Assisting the surgeon and other operating room team members.
  • Ensure proper care of instruments and patient safety by counting sponges, needles, and instruments before and after an operation.
  • Help the surgical team put on surgical gowns and gloves after they scrub.
  • Assist with patient positioning and other patient preparations before surgery.
  • Understand the proper way to maintain a sterile field during surgical procedures.

Learn more about Surgical Technology Training at ECC!

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