Health Sciences Offers Special Tour for Career Changers Ages 50+

Health Sciences Offers Special Tour for Career Changers Ages 50+

Age may be just a number, but employment statistics are not: the healthcare field is expected to expand more than any other industry through the addition of 3.2 million jobs between 2008 and 2018. That’s why more and more students over 50 years old are flocking to healthcare training.

“We are seeing more 50 plus students because of the economy, but we see a whole bunch because they’re just tired of their careers or they’re coming out of retirement,” said Scott Fortner, Health Sciences counselor at Santa Fe College.

To meet this need, the Health Sciences department is hosting a tour called Health Career Opportunities for Plus Fifty Students at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 15. Starting in the Health Sciences Lobby (Building W at the Northwest campus, 3000 NW 83rd St.), the tour invites students and the general public, ages 50 and up, to explore the various tracks Santa Fe College offers for healthcare education.

Fortner himself will be on hand to describe “the unique personalities” of each training program and its associated career, while guiding the public around Santa Fe College’s high-tech training facilities.

The event will feature a spectrum of careers ranging from cardiovascular technology, dental hygiene, radiology, to surgical technology. The time commitment needed to train varies anywhere from one semester for a certificate in Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) to 22 months for a degree program.

“It’s a great salary, and it’s very employable, but it has to be a fit for their personality,” said Fortner. “They must have a deep sense of compassion for people who may be sick and in an extremely vulnerable state. It’s a really hands-on, helping profession.”

The average age of students in these programs ranges from 30 to 35, so Fortner encourages older students not to be shy about pursuing a new career in the field.

“We have a lot of people who are 18, but we also have a lot who are in their 40s and 50s, even 60s,” says Fortner. “They feel very comfortable by tapping into their invaluable past experiences, which both paves the way for individual success and allows them to mentor to our younger, less experienced students. They tend to feel at home within the Santa Fe Health Sciences family.”

For more information about a new career in healthcare and all Santa Fe’s health sciences programs, contact Scott Fortner at 352-395-5733 or email to More information is also available online at

~ This press release was written by Allison Griner, Communication Specialist, College Relations


  • Scott Fortner, for more information about the tour, Santa Fe’s older health care students, or hiring stats and starting salaries, 352-395-5733 or
  • Julie Garrett, for assistance facilitating your story, 352-395-5430 or 352-870-2924 (cell) or