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OTC to offer hearing aid degree

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Ozarks Technical Community College will begin offering a two-year degree in hearing instrument science during the spring 2011 semester.

The degree is in response to a Missouri mandate taking effect in 2013, requiring a two-year associate's degree for anyone fitting customers with hearing aids. The degree is the first of its kind in Missouri, according to an Oct. 18 OTC news release.

“This program will result in vast improvements in the quality of hearing health care since our graduates will be well-versed in the theory and practice of hearing improvement,” said Stephen Bishop, OTC dean of allied health, in the release.

The program received funding through Gov. Jay Nixon's $12 million Training for Tomorrow program, meant to educate Missourians in high-tech fields and prepare them for the work force. Training for Tomorrow is administered through the Missouri Department of Economic Development.

The hearing instrument science degree will prepare graduates for immediate work by offering hands-on lab training and clinical internships, the release said.

"We want to produce craftspeople who will meet the challenges of the hearing-impaired," Bishop said.

The college will initially admit five to 10 students but will increase that number depending on demand, the release said. The deadline to apply for the first spring class is Nov. 20.[[In-content Ad]]

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