Harry T. Harper Jr., M.D., School of Cardiac and Vascular Technology

About the Program

The Harry T. Harper Jr. M.D. School of Cardiac and Vascular Technology is an affiliate program with Augusta Technical College and University of South Carolina. Three areas of specialized study are available which are Cardiovascular Technology, Echocardiography or Vascular Technology.

The program is a full time 18-month program that starts in the Fall of each academic year. The program involves extensive didactic (classroom) and clinical training in the students chosen area of specialty. Clinical training is offered at various medical centers participating in the program *.

Upon completion of the program students are eligible to challenge the national board exam in their respective specialized field of study to earn the credentials of a nationally recognized Registered Technologist.

*Before attending any clinical site, all students must meet pre-clinical site requirements that will include background check, drug screen and vaccinations.

What is Cardiac and Vascular Technology?

Heart and Vascular disease is a leading cause of death today. Through early diagnosis and treatment many people with cardiac and vascular disease can continue normal, active lives.

Physicians use stents, balloons, high-energy sound waves, computerized imaging and many other technologies to diagnose and provide care for these diseases. Cardiac and Vascular Technologists assist the physician in detecting and treating heart and vascular disease. Cardiac and Vascular Technology provides you with a dynamic and exciting career opportunity. The demand for technical professionals to assist physicians in this health care specialty is great.

This education program offers a unique learning opportunity for students interested in making a difference in the lives of patients. Students are able to choose between Cardiovascular Technology, Echocardiography and Vascular Technology as a course of study.


Cardiovascular Technology

Cardiovascular Technology is an Allied Health Profession that teaches Cardiovascular Technologist how to work with physicians in the cardiac catheterization laboratory to diagnose and treat heart patients. Cardiac Catheterization refers to the method of inserting small catheters through a needle into the blood vessels and into the heart so that X-rays, angiograms and other recordings can be taken to determine the heart’s structure and function.

As a member of the cardiac catheterization team, the Cardiovascular Technologist serves as a surgical scrub assistant, monitors the patient’s hemodynamic physiologic condition, circulates administers drugs, and operates additional laboratory equipment.

The Cardiovascular Technologist works with physicians in providing Cardiac Cath Lab studies that consist of performance of Diagnostic, Structural and Percutaneous Coronary Interventions (PCIs) procedures; such as ballooning or placing a stent to open clogged arteries, and Non-Coronary Interventions such as right heart catheterizations in which blood flow measurements are made, gives clot-dissolving drugs, assists in other structural and cardiac emergency procedures.

Upon completion of the didactic training, the student rotates though local medical centers participating in the program to complete the final semester of clinical internship. Students take the CCI national registry exam before graduation.


Echocardiography is an Allied Health Profession specifically concerned with the diagnosis and treatment of patients with cardiac disease. The Echocardiography Technologist works with physicians in the hospital, office, clinic or mobile outreach laboratory to evaluate and diagnose heart patients.

Echocardiography is one of the techniques of cardiovascular diagnosis requiring the greatest skill and expertise to gain information with the use of high-energy sound waves. The Technologist makes adjustments to the imaging equipment to bring out the structures of the heart. Real-time Digital imaging may be performed so that a crosssection of the heart may be viewed for evaluation. Even more information may be obtained by the use of Doppler color flow imaging to visualize actual blood flow through the chambers of the heart. Knowledge of cardiac anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology is important if useful information is to be collected for diagnosis and treatment of patients with cardiovascular diseases.

Vascular Technology

Vascular Technology is an Allied Health Profession that focuses on the detection of vascular disease. The Vascular Technologist uses sonography, segmental pressure and plethysmography to document venous and arterial disease. The exams they performed are interpreted by a vascular physician.

The Vascular Technologist is required to have in-depth knowledge of anatomy, hemodynamics, atherosclerotic disease processes, as well as interventions. The information acquired by the Technologist assists the physician in identifying and quantifying the extent of vascular disease. The exams are performed in a hospital setting, vascular laboratory, in the patient’s room, or in an operating suite.

The veins and arteries of the extremities, cranium and abdomen can be examined by the Vascular Technologist. These vessels may have a buildup of chronic atherosclerosis or a sudden blockage caused by trauma or embolism. The scope of exams performed by vascular Technologists are vast and may vary depending on patient’s symptoms and physician referral.

Career Opportunities

Continued technological advances in diagnosis and therapy have created steady demands for trained Technologists with few training programs available. Registered Cardiac and Vascular Technologists may pursue careers within hospitals, physicians’ offices, medical clinics, mobile outreach companies, cardiac equipment companies or research groups.


Admission to the School of Cardiac and Vascular Technology is a supplementary and competitive. All applicants must be of good academic standing with a minimum 2.75 GPA and have completed all of the required prerequisite core courses*.

* Minimal Required Core Courses: All course must be degree level courses: English Composition and Rhetoric, Humanities/ Fine Arts, College Algebra, Introduction to Psychology, Introduction to Statistics, Anatomy and Physiology I & II with Lab. Conceptual Physics with lab. High School Dual Enrollment credit may be accepted.


The School is accredited though the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) for the Joint Review Committee on Cardiovascular Technology, Eachocardiography and Vascular Technology which maintains and promotes appropriate standards of quality for education of Cardiac Vascular Technologist. Please visit www.CAAHEP.org for more information.


Applications are accepted each spring, please contact your respective educational institution (Augusta Technical College or USC-Columbia) for application deadline dates. You may also contact Elisabeth Frails at elisabeth.markhauser-frail@ piedmont.org or elizabeth.frails@augustatech.edu for further information.

The Cardiovascular School provides in-person program information session in the spring of each year. Please check the Augusta Technical College calendar for information current dates and times.

The Cardiac and Vascular School provides in-person program information session in the spring of each year. Please check the Augusta Technical College calendar for information current dates and times.

Affiliated Organizations

The Harry T. Harper Jr., M.D., School of Cardiac and Vascular Technology is affiliated with a number of national academic and health care organizations, including the University of South Carolina and Augusta Technical College. Through these affiliations students are given the benefit of a broader exposure to the expertise of various faculty and health care professionals.


Contact Information

Harry T. Harper Jr. M.D. School of Cardiac and Vascular Technology
Elisabeth M. Frails: 706-774-8976

Harriet Evans: 706-774-7669

Augusta Technical College
Artavia Littejohn: 706-771-4163

University of South Carolina-Columbia
Lourie White: 803-777-0372


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