Utah is a wonderland of big cities dispersed among its plains and prairies, allowing for its citizenry to engage in as much activity as they’d like or to recede into nature for a quick recharge. Anyone would love the uplifting, supportive atmosphere and culture of the land and people, but medical assistants will have reservations about the level of pay offered for the position and the higher than average cost of living. While current employees in the workforce may resent the spending power of their income, students will rejoice at the incredibly low tuition rates even at the most coveted and respected universities and colleges. There are pros and cons to living in Utah as a medical assistant, and your preferences and emphases can help you determine if this is the right place for you to set up residency. Don’t discount this fine state until you’ve read further.
Top 5 Cities
It doesn’t matter which state you live in. You’ll constantly find reasons to head into town, whether that be for work, shopping, or relaxing. Some days you may want to pick up dinner on the way home from work or on the weekends you’ll want to go to the movies. In Utah, you’ll have plenty of options available to you and you’ll be able to afford it as well. Utah’s cities support medium sized populations that will be engaged in all of the activities you’ll expect to have at your fingertips. This also means the hospitals and doctor’s offices will be busy and need as much help from medical assistants as they can find.
The state of Utah was estimated by the Census Bureau to house up to 2,900,872 residents within its borders as of 2013. Although the citizenry is spread throughout the state fairly evenly, there are still cities that have risen to be the most popular and therefore populated. Listed below are the top five cities in the state in descending order:
- Salt Lake City (pop. 186,440)
- West Valley City (pop. 129,480)
- Provo (pop. 112,488)
- West Jordan (pop. 103,712)
- Orem (pop. 88,328)
In Utah, even among the most popular cities you have choices of just how much activity you want to tolerate or seek out. You can live on outskirts of a small city for some peace and quiet or enjoy being in the mix of the hustle and bustle of somewhere like Salt Lake City.
Medical Assistant Salary in Utah
Utah is one state where you can’t be shy to demand a rightful wage for being a medical assistant. The reason is, in Utah the average medical assistant salary is $29,000 annually, which is about $2,000 per year lower than the national average. Armed with the information that the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the average across the country as $30,780, you should be able to negotiate a higher wage for yourself. Just because everyone else accepts a lower pay doesn’t mean you have to as well.
Compounding the problem of a lower average wage in Utah is the cost of living. In this state, you’ll find that everything across the board is a little bit less expensive, but don’t be fooled. By the time you’re ready to shop for a home, you’ll discover that the housing market is so high that it raises the entire cost of living for the state 6% higher than the national average. For this reason it’s even more important to shop yourself around until you can find a fair wage relative to the nation, not just the state. As a student, you may decide to leave the state after graduating, but staying and studying can be to your advantage due to the low tuitions.
Medical Assistant Schools in Utah
A strength for Utah is the high quality of education provided at an affordable price. The most valued and distinguished schools charge fractions of what some other state’s universities attempt to charge. Although the advantage is already clear, if a student can receive scholarships and financial aid, the cost of school can be very rewarding instead of financially crippling later in life. Receiving your degree and certification from an accredited school is a must before being employed as a medical assistant. There is no workaround to it, but you can at least try to receive the best instruction at the lowest price. Utah helps make this easy.
The most popular schools in Utah are all public universities that will let you enroll as a resident of the state at a very low cost. However, as a non-resident you will be expected to pay as much as two to three times as much in tuition. To be considered a resident, you need to have established a primary address in the state for at least the past 12 months. To really take advantage of Utah’s low tuition, you need to arrange for this to be the case. The amount of money saved will be worth delaying beginning your education for a year.
The most well reputed school in the state is the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Entry into this school will only cost $4,000 per school year for residents and $11,000 for non-residents. There are schools in other states charging over ten times that price. The second most popular option is the Brigham Young University in Provo with enrollment costing only $5,000 and $10,000 for residents and non-residents respectively. Utah State University will allow you access to their instructors and campus for $6,000 and $18,000 annually, based on residency.
If the prices of these, even as the most popular and in demand, didn’t surprise you, the next two will. The fourth most prestigious school in Utah is the Weber State University in Ogden, asking for a tuition of $3,000 and $7,000. The fifth on the list of the most distinguished is Utah Valley University in Orem charges a similar $3,000 and $8,000 based on your residency status. Even if you need to delay starting college for a year to gain residency, you can easily save up enough money to pay off your entire four-year college experience. Utah is great for education.
When people consider Utah, likely the most prominent items that arises is that of Salt Lake City, the state’s largest city, and the Mormon religion based there. There are other similarly sized cities that can all provide opportunity for work and relaxation to any medical assistant, but the average rate of pay is a little less than the national average. Combine this with the high cost of living and you’ll be at a financial disadvantage unfortunately. However, as a student, Utah offers a unique combination of promising universities with some of the lowest tuition prices in the nation. With its pros and cons, Utah may not be the best location for medical assistants, but its certainly not the worst either. It could serve you well.