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SICCM Programs

The Southern Illinois Collegiate Common Market (SICCM) is a cooperative educational design involving five community colleges: Rend Lake College, John A. Logan College, Shawnee College, Kaskaskia College and Southeastern Illinois College, as well as Southern Illinois University (both the Carbondale and Edwardsville campuses). Each school is entitled to select a number of students from their district to participate in the programs that SICCM offers. Rend Lake College participates in SICCM programming for Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA), Medical Laboratory Technology (MLT), Surgical Technology (ST) and Veterinary Technology (VET).

If you are interested in one of these programs, please call 618-437-5321, Ext. 1779 or 1769 for the most current information about admission and requirements. More information also is available at

SICCM Video ►

Medical Laboratory Technician ▼

The Medical Laboratory Technology (two-year) Associate in Applied Science Degree Program is offered through the Southern Illinois Collegiate Common Market (SICCM) and is a cooperative program with Rend Lake College, Shawnee Community College (Ullin), Southeastern Illinois College (Harrisburg) and John A. Logan College (Carterville). The program is accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLA), 84 Bryn Mawr Avenue, Suite 670, Chicago, Illinois 60631-3415; telephone number 773-714-8880.

The Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT) is employed in clinical laboratories of hospitals, clinics, physician's offices, and other health care facilities. The MLT performs testing on blood and body fluids under the supervision of a medical technologist and/or pathologist in the areas of hematology, chemistry, blood bank, urinalysis, serology, coagulation, and microbiology. The MLT performs maintenance on equipment and instruments, applies basic scientific principles to laboratory techniques and procedures, recognizes factors that affect procedures, and relates laboratory findings to common disease processes. In addition, the MLT interacts with physicians and other health care personnel.

Medical Lab Tech Video download icon yellow 01

Each spring semester, 5 students from each college are admitted to begin the program the following fall semester. Admission requirements include taking the ASSET test for admission to the college and the Pyschological Services Bureau (PSB) Health Occupations Aptitude Test-Revised. The PSB is offered at least four times yearly announced by the college.

Admission to the program is nondiscriminatory concerning race, creed, color, religion, sex, national origin, mental or physical handicap. Certain personal and physical attributes are key to success in the profession. These include good general physical health, good vision (with correction), good color vision, good manual dexterity, and good problem solving ability.

Once students are admitted to the MLT Program, all general education courses are taken at their home college campus, but the MLT core courses are taught at the SICCM facility in Herrin. Clinical rotations are required in the second year consisting of two semesters with 240 clock hours in each semester. Clinicals are completed in area hospital laboratories and clinics. Upon completion of program requirements, the student will be eligible to take a certification exam offered by several national agencies.

Retention of the student in the MLT program requires that the student earn a "C" or better in all MLT and natural science courses (chemistry, anatomy & physiology). Grades lower than "C" are failing. The student must maintain a "C" average or better in all courses required in the MLT curriculum.

Admission requirements for the Medical Laboratory Techology Program are listed under Associate in Applied Science Degree Programs. A background check and drug screening test are required.

Occupational Therapy ▼

The Associate in Applied Science Degree in Occupational Therapy Assistant is offered at five community colleges through the Southern Illinois Collegiate Common Market (SICCM). FIve students are admitted from each institution for an entering total of 25. Admitted students take general education courses on their own campuses and OTA courses together in a central laboratory. After classes and fieldwork internship are completed, students graduate at their entering college.

Occupational Therapy Video download icon yellow 01

The OTA courses have both lecture and hands-on laboratory components. Portions of the lecture section of several courses are Web-based. During the program, students will develop entry-level competencies necessary to provide services to persons of all ages who have functional loss due to physical, neurological, social/emotional, cognitive or developmental disabilities

The profession tailors rehabilitation individually for each client. Through evaluation and treatment, it seeks to restore or improve function in occupational performance. Treatment is provided within the context of the client's life environments and relationships. Occupation may be defined as the ordinary things people do each to work, to play and take care of themselves. Occupational therapy is based on the idea that our personal identity and feeling of value is closely tied to what we are able to do. We all choose many "occupational" roles that are important to us and make us excited to engage in life. When our function becomes impaired, we may lose both our independence and sense of self-worth.

The practice of OT utilizes the therapeutic use of purposeful and meaningful occupations in treatment, as well as focusing on these occupations as the goal of treatment. OT intervention may include restoration of performance abilities; instruction in compensatory techniques; adaption of tasks, processes or environments; disability prevention techniques, and health promotion strategies. Occupational therapy assistance, under the supervision of an occupational therapist, will work directly with persons to achieve a maximum level of independent living by developing the capacities that remain after disease, accident or other disability.

Occupational Therapy serves a diverse population in a variety of settings, such as hospitals, clinics, facilities for rehabilitation, extended and long-term care, sheltered workshops, schools, camps, private homes, physicians' offices, community programs and private practice.

A background check and drug screening test are required.

Admission requirements are listed under Associate in Applied Science Degree programs.

The SICCM Occuapation Therapy Assistant Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) located at 4720 Montgomery Lane, P.O. Box 31220, Bethesda, MD 20824-1220. ACOTE's phone number c/o AOTA is 301-652-AOTA. Program graduates will qualify to sit for the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy, Inc. (NBCOT) national certification examination. This computer-delivered examination will be delivered on-demand, after determining eligibility. Successful completion of this exam confers the title of Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). Illinois and most states additionally require licensure to practice, usually basing this on the NBCOT exam results. 
A felony conviction may adversely affect abilty to sit for the NBCOT exam and/or attain state licensure.

Prerequisite: ZOO 1105-Anatomy and Physiology I.

Surgical Technology ▼

The Surgical Technology program is a one-year certificate program offered through the Southern Illinois Collegiate Common Market (SICCM). Upon completion of the program, the technician will be able to demonstrate entry-level competencies for Surgical Technologists.
The program is accredited by The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) by recommendation of the Accreditation Review Committee on Education in Surgical Technology. Graduates of an accredited Surgical Technology program are eligible to sit for the National Certifying exam for Surgical Technologists. The exam is given year round by appointment. It is administered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA), which is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). Successful completion of this exam confers the title of Certified Surgical Technologist (CST).

Surgical Tech Video download icon yellow 01

A background check and drug screening test are requested.

(Surgical Technology Grade Standards - The student must maintain a "C" average or better in all Surgical Technology courses and maintain an overall grade-point average of 2.0 ("C") or better.)

Prequisite: ZOO 1105 Anatomy and Physiology I (4) or ZOO 1106 Anatomy and Physiology II (4)

Gainful Employment Information

Veterinary Technology ▼

The Veterinary Technology Program (VET) Associate Degree in Applied Science is offered at five community colleges through SICCM. The Veterinary Technician possesses both administrative and technical skills necessary to assist the veterinarian in all phases of medicine and surgery for small, large, exotic and lab animals. Technicians typically conduct clinical work in a private practice under the supervision of a veterinarian - often performing various medical tests (urinalysis, blood counts, tissue samples) along with treating and diagnosing medical conditions and diseases in animals. Veterinary Technicians assisting small-animal practitioners usually care for companion animals such as cats and dogs, but can perform a variety of duties with mice, rats, sheep, pigs, cattle, monkeys, birds, fish, and frogs. The Veterinary Technician plays an important role in client education, grief counseling and public relations. The program curriculum covers small and large animal breeds, nutrition and husbandry, veterinary technology, legal issues and office management, parasitology, surgical nursing, veterinary pharmacology, anesthesiology, emergency care and clinical pathology. Students benefit from theoretical-based classroom learning, as well as extensive hands-on experience through practicum at a variety of veterinary facilities. Additional job opportunities include working in animal shelters, zoos, medical research laboratories and private industry. Admission requirements are listed under Associate in Applied Science Degree programs.

Vet Tech Video download icon yellow 01

Accreditation Status: The SICCM Veterinary Technology program is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Graduates of the program will qualify to sit for the national accreditation examination, which is given annually. Successful completion of this exam confers the title of Certified Veterinary Technician.