Meet Jesse Brennan, BS, RT(R)(CT) | Radiation Sciences Programs

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