How to Become a Surgical Technologist in Ohio

Surgical technology is an important profession. These allied healthcare workers are responsible for cleaning and preparing operating rooms, handing instruments to surgeons and performing other assisting duties right in the operating room during procedures. They get to work hands-on with patients and doctors and help to make surgery safer. [En Español]

If you’re interested in a meaningful new career, or you’re a recent high school graduate in Ohio, consider becoming a surgical tech. There are no strict requirements in the state, but most employers hire those who have been through a post-secondary program in surgical technology.

Requirements to Be a Surgical Tech in Ohio

Ohio is like many other states in that it currently has no minimum requirements for education, training, or licensing for surgical technologists or surgical assistants. A bill to require licensing for these professionals was introduced, but it was never passed or made into law. This may change in the future, but for now it is entirely up to employers to determine what qualifications a candidate must have to be hired to work as a surgical technologist. Most prefer to hire those who have completed a degree or certificate program and who have passed the exam for certification through the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA).

National Certification for Surgical Technologists

While you do not have to be certified as a surgical tech to work in this career in Ohio, achieving national certification will prove to potential employers that you have the skills and training needed to do the job well. Certification from the NBSTSA is awarded by getting a passing score on the organization’s examination.

To qualify to take that exam, you must have first completed a post-secondary education program. It can be a program for a certificate or a two-year associate degree as long as it is accredited by either the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) or the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). Certification can be renewed every four years as long as you continue to take 15 credits of education courses each year.

Ohio Schools for Surgical Technology

To be eligible for national certification, you must complete a surgical technology program that will teach you what you need to know to do this job. Most programs include hands-on work experience in a clinical setting and under the supervision of surgeons. Ohio is home to several accredited programs that will help you qualify for the NBSTSA exam.

  • Owens Community College, Toledo. Students in Toledo can choose this accredited program in surgical technology, which has a selective admissions process. In addition to regular coursework in classrooms, students in this program participate in at least 120 cases in a hands-on clinical rotation in several area hospitals.
  • Cuyahoga Community College, Cleveland. Cuyahoga’s program in surgical technology confers associate degrees. Students can complete the program in two years, including one summer term in a clinical setting. There are 61 credits of coursework in total. The tuition costs are $6,400 for Ohio residents.
  • Cincinnati State Community College, Cincinnati. This associate degree program includes 65 credits and can be completed in two years on a full-time schedule. Included are clinical experiences in area hospitals. In 2017, 100 percent of the graduates of the program passed the NBSTSA certification exam.

Career Outlook and Salary Expectations

Careers in surgical technology are growing by about nine percent in Ohio. This is a little slower than the national average growth for surgical technologists, but it is still strong growth and indicates that job security is something you can rely on in this career. In 2016, there were 4,080 surgical techs working in the state, while in 2026 there are expected to be positions available for 4,440 surgical techs.

The average hourly salary for a surgical technologist in Ohio in 2019 was $23.31, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That same year,the average annual salary was $48,470. Conditions in your area may vary. You can expect to earn a good living in this career and to earn even more than average with more experience and at larger hospitals.

Working as a Surgical Technologist in Ohio

Surgical techs may work in doctor and dental offices that perform surgeries and in ambulatory surgery centers, but they are mainly employed by hospitals. Wherever there is a hospital, or more than one, you will find great opportunities. The most jobs available will be in larger cities and hospitals, like the Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland and Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center in Columbus. With a good program completed and a passing score on the national exam, you are ready to be hired as a surgical tech in Ohio.

College Programs

Akron, OH Area

American National University-Stow

3855 Fishcreek Road, Northwest, Stow, Ohio 44224-4305
(330) 676-1351
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

American National University’s Associate program is taught at their Stow campus in Stow in Summit County. The college has approximately 58 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. Fees for tuition are about $14,886 per year, while books and supplies may cost in the order of $2,979, although this varies from program to program.

University of Akron Main Campus

302 Buchtel Common, Akron, Ohio 44325-4702
(330) 972-7111
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

The University of Akron Main Campus’s Associate program in Surgical Technology is based at their campus in the city of Akron. Of the 23,101 students, about 17% are postgraduates. The University of Akron Main Campus has institutional accreditation from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Tuition fees for in-state students are generally in the order of $10,270 and for students from outside the state approximately $18,801 per year, while study materials may cost in the order of $1,000, depending on the program.

Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN Area

American National University-Cincinnati

6871 Steger Dr, Cincinnati, Ohio 45237
(513) 761-1291
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

American National University’s Associate program is based at their Cincinnati campus in the city of Cincinnati. Most of the school’s 93 students are on 2-year programs. The university is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools. Tuition fees are broadly around $14,886 per year, while study materials may cost in the order of $2,979, depending on the program.

Cincinnati State Technical and Community College

3520 Central Parkway, Cincinnati, Ohio 45223-2690
(513) 569-1500
Surgical Technology – Associate Program, Surgical Technology First Assistant – Certificate Program

Cincinnati State Technical and Community College offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. Classes are taken at their campus in the city of Cincinnati. Most of the school’s 9,630 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-state students is around $3,825 and for out-of-state students in the order of $7,393 per year, while study materials may cost in the order of $1,764, depending on the program.

University of Cincinnati-Clermont College

4200 Clermont College Dr, Batavia, Ohio 45103
(513) 732-5200
Surgical Technology – Associate Program, Surgical Assisting – Certificate Program

The University of Cincinnati-Clermont College offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. Classes are taken at their Clermont College campus in Batavia in Clermont County. Most of the school’s 3,099 students are on 4-year programs. The University of Cincinnati-Clermont College has institutional accreditation from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Tuition fees for in-state students are generally in the order of $5,316 and for students from outside the state approximately $12,548 annually, while study materials may cost around $1,500, depending on the program.

Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor, OH Area

Cuyahoga Community College District

700 Carnegie Ave, Cleveland, Ohio 44115-2878
(800) 954-8742
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

The Associate’s degree program in Surgical Technology at Cuyahoga Community College District is offered at their campus in the city of Cleveland. Most of the school’s 25,449 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-district students is generally in the order of $3,136 and are $3,953 and $7,648 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively, while study materials may cost around $1,700, depending on the program.

Lakeland Community College

7700 Clocktower Drive, Kirtland, Ohio 44094-5198
(440) 525-7000
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

Lakeland Community College’s Associate program in Surgical Technology is based at their campus in Kirtland in Lake County, OH. Most of the school’s 7,941 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-district students is generally in the order of $3,316 and are $4,165 and $9,205 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively, while study materials may cost around $1,200, depending on the program.

Lorain County Community College

1005 North Abbe Rd, Elyria, Ohio 44035-1691
(440) 366-5222
Surgical Technology – Associate Program, Surgical Assistant – Certificate Program

Lorain County Community College offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. All programs are offered at their campus in the city of Elyria, Ohio. The majority of of the school’s 11,520 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Tuition fees for in-district students are generally around $3,077 and are $3,679 and $7,302 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively. Books and supplies can cost around $1,404, although this will depend on the program.

Columbus, OH Area

Central Ohio Technical College

1179 University Drive, Newark, Ohio 43055-1767
(740) 366-1351
Surgical Technology – Associate Program, Surgical Technology – Certificate Program

Central Ohio Technical College offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. Classes are taken at their campus in Newark in Licking County, OH. The college has approximately 3,566 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Tuition fees for in-state students are generally around $4,296 and for out-of-state students approximately $7,056 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $1,320, although this will depend on the program.

Columbus State Community College

550 E Spring St, Columbus, Ohio 43215
(614) 287-5353
Surgical Technology – Associate Program, Surgical Technology – Certificate Program

Columbus State Community College offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. Classes are taken at their campus in the city of Columbus. This public college has in the region of 25,983 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for students living in the state is roughly about $3,808 and for students from other states around $8,430 for each academic year. Learning materials may cost roughly $1,442, although this will vary with the program.

Fortis College-Columbus

4151 Executive Parkway Ste 120, Westerville, Ohio 43081
(614) 882-2551
0 – Associate Program

Fortis College’s Associate-level 0 program is taught at their Columbus campus in Westerville in Franklin County, Ohio. This private, for-profit college has in the region of 661 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools. Fees for tuition are broadly about $14,900 yearly, while study materials may cost about $1,342, depending on the program.

Dayton, OH Area

American National University-Dayton

1837 Woodman Center Dr, Kettering, Ohio 45420
(937) 299-9450
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

American National University’s Associate-level Surgical Technology program is offered at their Dayton campus in Kettering in Montgomery County, OH. Most of the school’s 112 students are on 2-year programs. The university is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools. Fees for tuition are about $14,886 yearly, while study materials may cost about $2,979, depending on the program.

Sinclair Community College

444 W. Third St., Dayton, Ohio 45402-1460
(937) 512-3000
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

The Associate’s degree program in Surgical Technology at Sinclair Community College is offered at their campus in the city of Dayton. Most of the school’s 18,136 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Tuition fees for in-district students are generally around $2,476 and are $3,604 and $6,868 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively. Books and supplies can cost around $1,080, although this will depend on the program.

Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH Area

O C Collins Career Center

11627 State Rte 243, Chesapeake, Ohio 45619-0000
(740) 867-6641 x202
Surgical Technology – Certificate Program

O C Collins Career Center’s Certificate program is taught at their campus in Chesapeake in Lawrence County. This public college has in the region of 501 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Tuition fees for the Surgical Technology program are about $7,000 yearly. Study materials can cost about $2,000. Typically, the program is completed in 11 months.

Mansfield, OH Area

North Central State College

2441 Kenwood Circle, Mansfield, Ohio 44901-0698
(419) 755-4800
Surgical Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Surgical Technology at North Central State College is taught at their campus in Mansfield in Richland County, OH. The majority of of the school’s 2,939 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Fees for tuition for in-state students are about $3,591 and for students from other states likely to be about $7,181 yearly. Study materials can cost about $1,500, depending on the program chosen.

Parkersburg-Marietta-Vienna, WV-OH Area

Washington County Career Center-Adult Technical Training

21740 St. Rt. 676, Marietta, Ohio 45750
(740) 373-6283
Certified Surgical Technologist – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Certified Surgical Technologist at Washington County Career Center-Adult Technical Training is based at their campus in Marietta in Washington County, Ohio. This public college has around 208 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. Tuition fees for the Certified Surgical Technologist program are usually around $7,297 per year. Study materials can cost in the order of $1,040. Typically, the program is completed in 12 months.

Sandusky, OH Area

EHOVE Career Center

316 W Mason Rd, Milan, Ohio 44846
(419) 499-4663 x280
Surgical Technologist – Certificate Program

EHOVE Career Center’s Certificate program in Surgical Technologist is offered at their campus in Milan in Erie County. The majority of of the school’s 355 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. The college’s retention rate for full-time students is 80%. Fees for tuition are about $10,590 yearly. Study materials can cost in the order of $1,275, depending on the program chosen.

Southern Ohio Nonmetropolitan Area Area

Buckeye Hills Career Center

351 Buckeye Hills Road, Rio Grande, Ohio 45674-0157
(740) 245-5334
Surgical Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Surgical Technology at Buckeye Hills Career Center is based at their campus in Rio Grande in Gallia County, OH. The college has in the region of 149 students in total, with most students on programs that last under 2 years. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Tuition fees for the Surgical Technology program are around $8,250 per year. Study materials can cost in the order of $700. Typically, the program is completed in 12 months.

Scioto County Career Technical Center

951 Vern Riffe Drive, Lucasville, Ohio 45648-0766
(740) 259-5526
Surgical Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Surgical Technology at Scioto County Career Technical Center is based at their campus in Lucasville in Scioto County. The college has in the region of 198 students in total, with most students on programs that last under 2 years. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Tuition fees for the Surgical Technology program are usually around $8,767 per year. Study materials can cost in the order of $330. Typically, the program is completed in 12 months.

Toledo, OH Area

Herzing University-Toledo

5212 Hill Ave, Toledo, Ohio 43615
(419) 776-0300 x104
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

The Associate’s program in Surgical Technology at Herzing University can be taken at their Toledo campus in the city of Toledo. The college has in the region of 218 students in total, with most students on 4-year programs. The university is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Tuition fees are usually around $13,390 per year.

Owens Community College

30335 Oregon Rd, Perrysburg, Ohio 43551
(567) 661-7000
Surgical Technology – Associate Program, Sterile Processing – Certificate Program

Owens Community College offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. All programs are imparted at their campus in Perrysburg in Wood County. The college has in the region of 11,531 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-state students is usually around $4,643 and for out-of-state students around $8,305 for each academic year. Learning materials may cost roughly $1,400, although this will vary with the program.

Youngstown-Warren-Boardman, OH-PA Area

American National University-Youngstown

3487 Belmont Ave, Youngstown, Ohio 44505
(330) 759-0205
Surgical Technology – Associate Program

American National University’s Associate-level Surgical Technology program is based at their Youngstown campus in Youngstown in Mahoning County. This private, for-profit college has about 100 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The university is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools. The cost of tuition is likely to be in the order of $14,886 for each academic year. Learning materials may cost roughly $2,979, although this will vary with the program.

Choffin Career and Technical Center

200 E Wood St., Youngstown, Ohio 44503-1600
(330) 744-8700 x8710
Surgical Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Surgical Technology at Choffin Career and Technical Center can be taken at their campus in the city of Youngstown, OH. The majority of of the school’s 119 students are on diploma programs of under two years. The college is institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. The cost of tuition is in the order of $8,200 for each academic year. Learning materials may cost roughly $1,700, although this will vary with the program.

* Tuition fees and accredition status are correct at the time of writing, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Confirm with college before applying.

Neighbor States

See options in Indiana, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Kentucky and Michigan.