PENDLETON --- Polly Kay, who has led Tri-County Technical College's Medical Laboratory Technology (MLT) program for the last decade and will retire August 15 after a 27-year teaching career at the College,  received the best retirement gift she could ask for - her final graduating class earned a perfect pass rate on the National American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) exam.

All of the 14 May 2016 MLT graduates who took the National Certification Exam received a passing score. 

          Since 2006 eight out of 10 graduating classes have achieved 100 percent pass rates and program scores never have dipped below 92 percent.

"It's so rewarding to know that we - instructor Deborah Brock, our adjunct instructors and I  -- have prepared these students to be competent graduates who were ready for the national certification exam and the workforce," said Mrs. Kay. 

          Tri-County ranks higher than the national figures when comparing registry scores.  Tri-County's mean score was 648 as opposed to the national score of 523. (A person must score 400 or above to pass the exam.)  Tri-County ranks 100 percent in average scores for this cycle (the last six months) as compared to the 82.55 percent national average score.

          The exam is a computerized, competency-based exam.  Students are tested on seven areas: chemistry, microbiology, hematology, immunohematology, urinalysis and other body fluids, immunology and laboratory operations.  There are 100 multiple-choice questions to cover these seven major areas of clinical laboratory science.   Medical laboratory technicians analyze blood and other bodily fluids for disease processes in hospitals and doctors' offices.

          Tri-County's eight hospital affiliates are AnMed Health, Bon Secours Saint Francis, Baptist Easley Hospital, Cannon Memorial Hospital, Self Regional Health Care, Oconee Memorial Hospital, Stephens County Hospital and St. Mary's Sacred Heart. Hospital.    

          Tri-County's MLT program is accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS).