Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography

SDMS Announcements

Sonographers Making Waves - Bethany Francis

by Katie Kuntz, MEd, RT(R), RDMS, RVT, FSDMS

Sonographers Making Waves - Risa Schneck
Sonographers Making Waves
Bethany Francis MS, RT(R), RDMS, RVT

How long have you been a sonographer?
Compared to many sonographers, I am just getting started in my career. I have been a diagnostic medical sonographer since 2011. Although fairly new to the profession, I have a great love and passion for sonography.

Where ​are you located?
I currently live, with my husband Jesse, in the small town of Dallas, Northeastern Pennsylvania.

How did you become interested in your career? 
Growing up, I always knew that I wanted to work in healthcare. As the daughter of a registered nurse, I assumed that I would follow in my mom’s footsteps and enter into nursing. In high school, I was a candy striper at a local hospital and had the opportunity to shadow health care workers in many departments. I discovered radiology and something seemed to click. I was accepted into the Medical Imaging Program at Misericordia University. After completing my bachelor’s, I knew I wanted to continue my education in the imaging field. Sonography was intriguing to me because it was so different, requiring a high independent skill level of its own compared to all of the other imaging modalities. I went on to complete a certificate in diagnostic medical sonography. Once I picked up a transducer, I knew I had made the right career choice. My love for education and ultrasound has only bloomed from there. 

Where ​do you work?
I work for Geisinger Health System as a clinic sonographer in an outpatient setting doing general and vascular sonography. I really enjoy working in this setting because it gives me the opportunity to see many of the same patients. I love being able to build relationships and walk with them through whatever they may be facing – whether it be following them through their pregnancy or multiple follow-ups after a cancer diagnosis.

How have you been “Making Waves?”
Once I entered college, I knew I had chosen the right profession. Thankfully in 2011, I secured a job with Geisinger Health System as a sonographer right out of school and went on to earn my RDMS credentials in Abdomen, OB/GYN, and Breast, as well as my RVT. In the spring of 2013, I started classes pursuing a master’s degree in Instructional Technology, helping me get one-step closer to my goal of teaching someday. It took me 2 ½ years, while working full time at my current job, to complete my graduate work. After completing my master’s, I began teaching as an adjunct professor at Misericordia University in their diagnostic medical sonography department. I currently teach the pelvic sonography and breast sonography courses. 

Additionally, I have taken on a leadership role as the president of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Society of Ultrasound through the encouragement of a senior sonographer. This local professional society is made up of sonographers in the northeast region of Pennsylvania that recently organized an educational symposium offering lectures from experts in the field such as Frederick W. Kremkau, PhD, and Richard A. Palma BS, RDCS, RCS, ACS, FASE to sonographers in the area.

My journey as a sonographer would not be what it is today without the encouragement of my college professors and other senior sonographers. A professor put the “bug” in my ear about pursuing education early in my education and pointed out that I had the potential to make a great instructor someday. Outside of the profession, I am heavily involved in my church community. I feel that being involved in both the profession and community helps balance me and allows me to give back. I am so thankful for the opportunities that I have to serve. 

I owe where I am today to my dedicated professors and instructors. My goal is to pass along my passion, leadership, and enthusiasm for sonography and education to the next generation of future sonographers, and I look forward to where the future will take me.

What would you like to tell other SDMS members to inspire them to make a difference and enrich their careers? 
I would encourage other SDMS members to make a difference and enrich their careers through education as well as professional and community involvement. As you learn and continue your education you will not only enrich your mind and career, you also have the potential to change the lives of your patients. You can provide better care the  more you know and understand.

Get involved in local societies and take advantage of any continuing education events. Further your education. Take classes to help pass boards and earn more credentials. Go beyond the minimum job education requirements. As a sonographer, your education does not stop when you graduate from a program. Learning happens every time you pick up a transducer.

Do you know a sonographer who is doing something out of the ordinary? Whether it is a grand gesture or a small moment that makes a difference in someone’s life, the SDMS would like to hear about it so that we can share it with you. So, if YOU know someone who is making waves, tell us at!