Amy McCallum talks about second year (Diagnostic Medical Ultrasound)

A day in the life

Amy McCallum talks about second year (Diagnostic Medical Ultrasound)


I’m on the admissions committee and I’m the ultrasound rep on the School of Health Sciences student council. I’ve tried to get more involved because I want to get everything I can out of the university experience.

A matter of serendipity

It’s a happy coincidence that Amy McCallum found the School of Health Sciences after two years working towards a BA in English and psychology.

“I work part time in the Dal registrar’s office, and just happened to come across it while flipping through the course calendar,” she says. “I didn’t know it existed before. But as soon as I started looking into it, I realized I wanted to do it.”

Amy liked the idea of switching to a program that would allow her to jump straight into a related job after graduation. Going into Diagnostic Medical Ultrasound also allowed her to work hands-on in the lab and hospital, almost from day one.

“It’s frustrating in first year when you’re just learning and you can’t get the right images,” she says. “It takes time to learn. People think it’s a lot easier than it actually is. They don’t realize it’s actually a medical exam. You’re looking for pathologies, not just doing it to determine a baby’s sex. There are so many different aspects of ultrasound. People think it’s all about obstetrics, but it’s used for so many other things.”

Amy will write her national certification exam after her third year and has the option to leave the program then with a diploma. But right now she’s thinking she’ll continue on to get the full degree.

“I can do my fourth year all online,” she says. “You don’t have to be on campus in Halifax. So I could be working in the hospital while I finish my degree.”

Work should be no problem for Amy since she had a job lined up before she even started the program. Her schooling is sponsored by the hospital in Amherst, N.S., close to her home in Parrsboro.

“They pay for most of my tuition and give me a summer job for the two months every year I’m not doing my clinical practicum. In return, I’ll work for them for every year of school they paid for.”