Alycia Simons

GateWay Grad Sails into High-Demand Healthcare Career

After serving five years in the Navy, Alycia Simons was focused on finding a new career. She was determined to work in the healthcare industry and after a bit of research discovered the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program at GateWay. 

“I was looking to challenge myself and was excited about the dynamic nature of the field, which has presented me with interesting cases and allows me to build the necessary skills to perform a variety of ultrasounds,” said Simons.

She chose GateWay because it is the only CAAHEP Diagnostic Medical Sonography program in Arizona. 

“If I was going to start my career over, I wanted to go to the best school that I could,” she said.  

Simons began taking her prerequisites in 2016 and was officially accepted into the program in 2019. Simons knew the two-year program would be demanding and juggling schoolwork and motherhood would be difficult. And then, the pandemic hit.  

“Almost every aspect of our program was disrupted. Throughout the journey, our professors kept pushing us forward and finding ways to ensure we would graduate on time and be successful. I also give a lot of credit to my vascular professor, Tabitha Hatfield. She is a great educator with an affable personality, who has made such a positive impact on my experience.”

Like many parents, the COVID-19 pandemic forced families to re-evaluate their daily routines.

“At the same time, I was trying to balance my school with the needs of my daughter, like how she was going to get the schooling and care that she needed.”

Simons looks forward to graduating in May and plans to sit for several certification exams -- ARDMS, RVT and OB/GYN.

When asked what advice she would give her junior DMS students, Simons shared, “My biggest piece of advice has been to just absorb what you can from every direction. By seeing a variety of techniques and tips from different techs, you find the ones that will ultimately mold you into the tech you want to be.”

To learn more about the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program, visit