[Histonet] Practical Exam

Lee & Peggy Wenk lpwenk <@t> sbcglobal.net
Fri Feb 20 20:34:25 CST 2009

I'll respond to this, as these are my students. Yes, my students ARE hired
at our hospital, AND with the 90 day probation, same as outside candidates.

The difference is that, our department has already been working with the HT
students for 7 months, and the HTL students for 11 months. 5 days a week, 8
hours a day. Everyone in the labs has been working with the students, and
knows the students, and knows their knowledge and ability and personality
and attitude. When there is an opening, the techs get a say in which student
they want to hire and work with. Any program graduate hired in our labs is
under the 90 day probabation, but basically they have already been through a
7 and 11 month "probation" as a student. We would still fire a graduate new
hire during their 90 day probation. However, while they were students in our
program, we had already gotten rid of students who did not learn well
enough, or couldn't do the procedures, and, if there was an attitude
problem, it either got settled, or they left. So by the time a student
graduates and gets hired by our lab, there are very few suprises.

If we are hiring someone from the outside, we don't know their knowledge,
ability, personality and attitude. We don't know them. We don't know if how
they will fit into our lab and with everyone else in the lab. And we haven't
been assessing them for the previous 7 and 11 months. So the 90 days
probation time is even more important.

That's one of the reasons to have a School in your institution, or to be a
clinical affiliate for a college-based HT/HTL program. Or even one of the
on-line HT/HTL programs. You get to assess the students ahead of time, to
see if you want to hire them, to see if they are capable, to see if they
would be a good fit with your people. (Hint, hint - we need more programs,
and more clinical affiliates!)

Sharon - Please feel free to add anything else. I hope I'm not putting words
in your mouth. I'm speaking as the program director, not as the histology
lab supervisor. (disclaimer here)

Peggy A. Wenk, HTL(ASCP)SLS
Beaumont Hospital
Royal Oak, MI 48073

-----Original Message-----
From: histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
[mailto:histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu] On Behalf Of Podawiltz,
Sent: Friday, February 20, 2009 8:11 PM
To: Sharon Scalise; Bill O'Donnell; Esther Peters
Cc: Histonet
Subject: RE: [Histonet] Practical Exam

Based on what you just said, the students that come from your school do not
have to do a 90 probationary period while someone you hire from the outside
does? Man, could I have fun from a HR perspective on unequal treatment of
new hires.

Tom Podawiltz, HT (ASCP)
Histology Section Head/Laboratory Safety Officer LRGHealthcare
603-524-3211 ext: 3220
From: histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
[histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu] On Behalf Of Sharon Scalise
[SSCALISE <@t> beaumonthospitals.com]
Sent: Friday, February 20, 2009 7:00 PM
To: Bill O'Donnell; Esther Peters
Cc: Histonet
Subject: Re: [Histonet] Practical Exam

It is up to each individual institution to "test" a new hire for their
competency.  We are lucky to have both an HT and HTL program at our hospital
so when we hire a graduating student we already know their work habits and
skill level.  If I do hire someone from the outside, they have 90 days that
they are in a probationary period.  If during this 90 day period they have
not proven their ability to complete the required work according to our
standards, they could be let go or I have the option to extend the
probationary period.  Whether they have completed a practical exam or not,
they still need to prove they are competent after they are hired.
We have had to hire from the outside (yes it is a pain going through this
process) and you hope that your new hire is as competent as they claim to
be.  But in the end you will be the one stuck with an incompetent employee
if you don't "test" them and catch it before their probationary period ends.
Whether or not they have taken a practical exam really does not matter in
the end, almost anyone can redo a stain enough times to get it right.  The
real question is, can they do it right on a daily basis and in a timely

Sharon E. Scalise, HTL (ASCP)
Histology Supervisor
William Beaumont Hospital
Royal Oak, MI 48073
248 898-5981
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