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Medical Technologist

A Navy Medical Technologist examines an x-ray

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Responsibilities

Medical Technologists play an integral role in the Department of Defense healthcare team by heading up laboratories in support of medical and scientific specialists or ensuring medical test accuracy for servicemembers and their families. As a Medical Technologist and Officer in the Medical Service Corps, you may:

  • Work with highly skilled members of Navy medical teams to maintain the health and readiness of our service members, their families and those in need around the globe
  • Perform and manage a full range of laboratory services, with responsibility for ensuring the accuracy of results and compliance with the industry's highest standards
  • Provide clinical laboratory and blood bank support to deployed forces
  • Supervise efficient operation of laboratory facilities at home and abroad
  • Bear responsibility for assets and personnel

Work Environment

Medical Technologists may serve at any one of more than 250 Navy and medical facilities around the globe, from Hawaii to Japan, Germany to Guam and Washington, D.C., to Washington state. As a Medical Technologist, you could work at one of the highly acclaimed National Naval Medical Centers in Bethesda, MD, Portsmouth, VA, or San Diego, CA. Or you could provide medical support aboard one of two dedicated hospital ships—the USNS Comfort and USNS Mercy.

Training & Advancement

Upon graduation from medical school, those pursuing a Medical Technologist position are required to attend Officer Development School (ODS) in Newport, RI. ODS is a five-week program that provides a comprehensive and intense introduction to the responsibilities of Navy Staff Corps Officers. Here they learn about the military structure of the U.S. Navy, its rich history of traditions and customs, leadership development and military etiquette.

Once that training is complete, you will learn the ins and outs of life as a Medical Technologist and receive your first assignment. Promotion opportunities are regularly available but competitive and based on performance.

Post-Service Opportunities

It’s also important to note that specialized training received and work experience gained in the course of service can lead to valuable credentialing and occupational opportunities in related fields.

Education Opportunities

Wherever you are in your professional career, the Navy can help ease your financial burdens and advance your career with generous financial assistance and continuing education programs. Opportunities for further education within this platform include:

Through the Navy Health Professions Loan Repayment Program (HPLRP), you may be eligible to receive financial assistance to pay down the cost of your graduate education.

Qualifications & Requirements

A degree from a four-year college or university is a minimum educational requirement to become a Commissioned Officer. You must also attend Officer Training. There may be exceptions to the degree requirements based on extensive service experience.

To qualify for employment consideration as a Medical Technologist in the Navy Medical Service Corps, you must meet these basic requirements:

  • Be a U.S. citizen currently practicing in the United States
  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university and certification of completion of a one-year course of study in medical technology, conducted by a school or program accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Science (NAACLS)
  • Certification as a medical technologist by a national certifying agency, such as the American Society of Clinical Pathologists (ASCP) or the National Certification Agency (NCA) for Medical Laboratory Personnel
  • Two years of experience in a clinical laboratory as a medical technologist (The NAACLS program completion requirement may be waived if the applicant has at least four years of documented laboratory technician experience)
  • Be willing to serve a minimum of three years of Active Duty
  • Be between the ages of 18 and 41
  • Be in good physical condition and pass a full medical examination

Preferred Requirements

  • Undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale with emphasis in major coursework
  • Supervisory experience in a hospital-based clinical laboratory
  • Clinical experience in blood banking
  • Evidence of continuing education through coursework, seminars, workshops, attendance at professional meetings, etc.

General qualifications may vary depending upon whether you’re currently serving, whether you’ve served before or whether you’ve never served before.

Part-Time Opportunities

Serving part-time in the Navy Reserve, your duties will be carried out during your scheduled drilling and training periods. During monthly drilling, Medical Technologists in the Navy Reserve typically work at a location close to their homes. This gives you the flexibility to expand your profession in the Navy without compromising your civilian career at home.

For annual training, Medical Technologists may serve anywhere in the world, whether at sea, in hospitals stateside, or on bases in countries around the world.

Take a moment to learn more about the general roles and responsibilities of Navy Reserve Sailors.

Most of what you do in the Navy Reserve is considered training. The basic Navy Reserve commitment involves training a minimum of one weekend a month (referred to as drilling) and two weeks a year (referred to as Annual Training) – or the equivalent.

Medical Technologists in the Navy Reserve serve in an Officer role. Before receiving the ongoing professional training that comes with this job, initial training requirements must first be met.

For current or former Navy Officers (NAVET): Prior experience satisfies the initial leadership training requirement – so you will not need to go through Officer Training again.

For current or former Officers of military branches other than the Navy (OSVET), as well as for Officer candidates without prior military experience: You will need to meet the initial leadership training requirement by attending Officer Development School (ODS). This will count as your first Annual Training.

With flexible training options, Medical Service Corps Officers in the Navy Reserve can comfortably balance civilian and military schedules. You can maintain your own life and your own career – enriching both with the rewarding work you do for others.

The Medical Service Corps in the Navy Reserve offers you a truly diverse variety of operational venues. In some cases, you can even work in the same civilian location you work in now. What’s more, you will enjoy an unrivaled sense of pride and fulfillment known only to those who serve.