Meet Jesse Brennan, BS, RT(R)(CT) | Radiation Sciences Programs
Logo for University of Iowa Health Care This logo represents the University of Iowa Health Care

Meet Jesse Brennan, BS, RT(R)(CT)

Meet Jesse Brennan, BS, RT(R)(CT) Jesse Brennan, portrait

Tell us about your background: I originally went to school at Iowa State University getting my bachelor’s degree in sociology, although I don’t say that too loudly around here.  I generally am a Hawkeye unless it’s a game against Iowa State.  I worked for a few years in social service positions in the Cedar Rapids area, including working for the Iowa Department for the Blind as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor.  I enjoyed the challenges of the position but wasn’t sure I wanted to do that as a career, so my father encouraged me to investigate the field of Radiology.  He worked in maintenance and engineering at a hospital in southwest Iowa where he had interactions with Radiologic Technologists and thought it might be a good career for me to look at.  I did some research about the field and decided to apply to a program through Mercy and St. Luke’s Hospitals in Cedar Rapids.  I was accepted, completed the program, and was hired at The University of Iowa in June of 2003. I worked in x-ray for about a year then cross-trained into CT where I worked for almost 15 years.  In 2017, an opportunity became available for me to work in RT education, so I began a new position as an Educator in the Radiation Sciences Program, and this where I work currently.  I like education because I like working with new students.  I've always remembered what it was like to be a student, and I enjoy being able to work with, encourage, and have a positive impact on their experiences as students.

Why did you pick RT as your career field: I chose to get into the field because I am a person who likes to help others and I just genuinely enjoy working with people.  I also thought the technology was interesting and I liked the hands-on experiences of the field.  Lastly, at the time when I started x-ray school, I was single and had hopes to travel, make lots of money, and see the country as a traveling technologist.  During x-ray school I met my wife, so those initial plans changed, but I am happy to be married, have 3 beautiful children, and live and work in Iowa.

I chose to work at the University of Iowa because I knew I would learn a lot and hoped it would be a place to advance my career.  I also knew it had competitive pay and very good benefits for myself and future family.

What’s your favorite exam? One of my favorite exams to perform is the Cross-table Lateral Hip x-ray.  This view can be a challenge and one where many x-ray skills come into play.  I enjoy the challenge of obtaining a good image on especially difficult patients, then feeling proud of the work I have done. 

Advice for anyone interested in the RT career field: My advice for anyone interested in the field is to do some research and job shadow different areas.  This is a unique field that can involve a wide variety of physical and mental challenges while working with people who are in need.  Sometimes situations can be stressful, so I think you need to be someone that is comfortable with a variety of social interactions with all types of people and have a calling for working with and helping others.


Wednesday, November 9, 2022