Surgical Technology

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CWI Surgical Technology Program

We provide a very fast-paced, intense program! Students must be able to fully engage in the program and dedicate 10-12 hours a week outside of the classroom to study. Mona Bourbonnais

Surgical Technology Application Deadline has been extended through

Friday, May 20, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.

The application period for the Surgical Technology Cohort starting in Summer 2022 will open and begin accepting applications Nov. 1, 2021 through the deadline of May 20, 2022 at 5 p.m. For questions, please contact the program or your advisor.

Surgical Technology Application

Interested in a health career? Virtual Healthcare Sessions Flyer If so, please attend one of our Zoom information sessions to learn how to submit a competitive application to one of our many exciting health programs. No RSVP required! Please use this link to join us  on one of the scheduled dates.

CWI's Surgical Technology program has a state-of-the-art facility located in the Ada County Center Quail Building. Demand is very high for this program and space is limited to 18 students per year.   

Surgical Technologists are allied health professionals who are an integral part of the team of medical practitioners providing surgical care to patients. Surgical Technologists work under the supervision of a surgeon to facilitate the safe and effective conduct of invasive surgical procedures, ensuring that the operating room environment is safe, that equipment functions properly, and that the operative procedure is conducted under conditions that maximize patient safety. Surgical Technologists possess expertise in the theory and application of sterile and aseptic technique and combine the knowledge of human anatomy, surgical procedures, and implementation tools and technologies to facilitate a physician's performance of invasive therapeutic and diagnostic procedures.

Does the thought of helping to prepare a surgical team for the operating room interest  you? Then consider preparing for an exciting new career by applying for our Surgical Technology program. Surgical technologists help prepare operating rooms for surgery by setting up surgical instruments, surgical equipment sterile drapes, as well as preparing and passing medications . During surgery, they provide direct patient care by working as members of the sterile team.  Surgical Technologists are responsible for maintaining the sterile field during the surgical procedures, passing instruments and assisting the surgeon with the procedure. 

College of Western Idaho’s (CWI) program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education programs (CAAHEP).

CAAHEP  (  9355 - 113th St. N., #7709, Seminole, FL 33775

After completing the program, students are eligible to take the National Certification Exam for Surgical Technologists (CST).  The CST credential is a requirement for employment in the hospitals of the Treasure Valley and Idaho.

The following is our 11-year trend on certification exams from the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) for applicants taking the exam the first time:

  • 2021 - 100% pass rate
  • 2020 - 100% pass rate
  • 2019 - 100% pass rate
  • 2018 -   94% pass rate
  • 2017 - 100% pass rate
  • 2016 - 100% pass rate
  • 2015 - 100% pass rate
  • 2014 -   94% pass rate
  • 2013 -   94% pass rate
  • 2012 - 100% pass rate
  • 2011 - 100% pass rate
  • 2010 - 100% pass rate
  • 2009 - 100% pass rate


The program is designed to prepare competent, entry level surgical technologists in the cognitive, psychomotor, and affective domains. The curriculum prepares students to assist in the care of the surgical patient in the operating room and to function as a member of the surgical team. Students apply theoretical knowledge to the care of surgical patients and develop the skills necessary to prepare patients for surgery; prepare supplies, equipment, and instruments; maintain aseptic conditions; and assist surgeons during operations. Employment opportunities include large hospitals, labor/delivery/emergency departments, inpatient/outpatient surgery centers, dialysis units/facilities, physicians' offices, and central supply processing units.

Why This Program

A Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) assists in the operating room preparing instruments and supplies, passing them to the surgeon, anticipating and meeting the surgeon’s needs, and ensuring patient safety throughout the procedure. The stakes are always high in the operating room and the job can involve stressful, pressure-filled situations. The rewards of a job well done are worth the effort. The CST enables lives to be saved and witnesses momentous changes in patients’ health every day.

What You Will Learn to Do

  • Sterilize, disinfect, and pass surgical instruments
  • Understand surgical procedures and anticipate the needs of the surgeon
  • Ensure quality patient care during the operative procedure
  • Set up sterile table with instruments, supplies, equipment, and medications/solutions prior to operation
  • Gown and glove surgeon and assistants
  • Prepare sterile dressings and help drape a sterile field
  • Vigilantly maintain a sterile field during surgery
  • Count supplies prior to surgery and before incision is closed
  • Assist other team members with terminal cleaning of room
  • Help prepare surgical room for next patient
  • Participate in a minimum of 120 Surgeries; including a minimum of 30 General Surgeries and a minimum of 90 Specialty Surgeries

Respectful Community

The College of Western Idaho is committed to maintaining a Respectful Community by providing equal opportunity for all individuals and does not discriminate in services, benefits, or activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability status, veteran status, age, or any other legally protected status.  More on Title IX

News and Blogs

Female healthcare student carrying a clipboard

Applications are now being accepted for CWI’s healthcare programs.

Students attending a barbecue hosted by Saint Alphonsus Aug. 27, 2019

Professional Nursing and Surgical Technology students enjoy food and networking during a barbecue hosted by Saint Alphonsus.

Business of Robotics Symposium attendees

Business of Robotics Symposium delights attendees with live robotics demonstration, a tour, and industry expertise.

Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center and CWI representatives in classroom.

Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise has donated a da Vinci Robotic Surgical System to CWI's Surgical Technology program.

Health Science Student in medical classroom

The CWI Foundation received a $2,000 grant from the John William Jackson Fund.

Group of Surgical Technology students.

The CWI Surgical Technology program recently welcomed the public to its brand-new lab in celebration of National Surgical Technology Week.