LCCC to develop a Respiratory Therapy Program

CHEYENNE, Wyoming – Laramie County Community College is excited to announce the development of a Respiratory Therapy program at the College. LCCC recently received the final piece of funding support to develop the new program through the Wyoming Works Program. This funding will be combined with a financial commitment from Cheyenne Regional Medical Center, allowing LCCC to plan for a tentative student start date in the Fall of 2024.

“We view this as an investment in our future as a hospital, and more importantly the future of the individuals and families we serve with our commitment to quality care,” said Tim Thornell, president and CEO of CRMC. 

The establishment of this new program will help to address the growing need for respiratory therapists in Wyoming and specifically Southeast Wyoming. According to JobsEQ, in 2020, of the 120 regional Respiratory therapy jobs in Wyoming, Albany and Laramie County held 46 percent of these open positions. Currently there is only one Respiratory Therapy program in Wyoming, offered by Casper College. With the launch of the program at LCCC, the College will not only be able to assist with the shortage of respiratory therapists in Southeast Wyoming, but also help address shortages in Nebraska and Colorado. 

“We have seen an increased demand for respiratory therapists due to growth in middle-aged and elderly populations along with the impacts of COVID-19,” shared Starla Mason, dean of health sciences & wellness at LCCC. “We appreciate all the support we have received from CRMC, Ivinson Memorial Hospital in Laramie and our local community partners to secure the necessary funding to move this program forward.” 

The Respiratory Therapy program at LCCC is planned to be an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree, designed to develop the competencies, knowledge, skills, and professional abilities necessary for students to enter a successful career in the respiratory therapy field. Upon completion of the AAS degree, graduates will be eligible to sit for the Certification and Registry national exams, earning the credentials of Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT), and Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT).

Currently, LCCC offers 13 healthcare related programs, leading to a variety of career opportunities, to help meet the growing need of healthcare workers in Wyoming and the surrounding areas.