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Mossman K. L.; Poston, J. W.
Health Physics: August 1988
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The next 15 to 20 y promise to be a challenging period in health physics education. The U.S. Department of Energy, in a review of current and projected labor market conditions for professional health physicists and health physics technicians, reports current shortages of professional health physicists in the civilian nuclear industry and predicts a high potential for shortages during the next 15 y. The academic health physics community is also faced with the following issues that compound the difficulty in meeting the high employment demands for qualified health physicists in the near future: (1) A decreasing number of programs-in the past few years, several programs have folded or have undergone reorganization; thus reducing the availability of quality programs to train health physicists and health physics technicians. (2) Decreasing federal funding-Government funding of health physics programs is limited, necessitating programs to obtain support from the private sector or from within the colleges and universities themselves. (3) Accreditation of programs-Should programs be accredited to standardize quality and program content? (4) Recruiting quality students-What can programs do to attract high-quality students into the health physics profession? In this paper, each of these issues is examined and possible solutions proposed. Our discussion is primarily meant to be provocative-in this way we hope to stimulate much-needed discourse as a first step in addressing and solving these problems which face the academic health physics community.

©1988Health Physics Society