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Boise State Respiratory Care garners national award

Alyssa Zemke, a student in the Master of Science in Respiratory Care program, works on her laptop
Alyssa Zemke, a student in the Master of Science in Respiratory Care program.

For their continued highlighting of best practices in respiratory care, Boise State University’s Master of Science in Respiratory Care program is an Educational Program Award winner of the 2021-2022 American Association for Respiratory Care Apex Recognition Award. Boise State is among an elite group of respiratory care departments from across the U.S. to receive the award.

The Master of Science in Respiratory Care is a fully online program designed for active registered respiratory therapists to pursue a master’s degree in their field.

The program supports the professional advancement of respiratory therapists who wish to broaden the scope of their practice through the pursuit of administration and educational positions, either in an academic or healthcare setting. Those who wish to serve as leaders and content experts in a clinical setting will gain an advanced understanding of cardiopulmonary physiology and disease management through this program.

“We are extremely proud to share this award with our faculty, staff, and students,” said Megan Koster, chair of the Department of Respiratory Care. “This program was intentionally and lovingly designed to distinguish our MSRC students as leaders in the field. We are humbled to be recognized for both our work and theirs toward the advancement of our profession.”

The AARC Apex Recognition Award was developed in 2017 as a way for the AARC Board of Directors to recognize respiratory care departments that demonstrate high quality care.

“Respiratory care departments everywhere are coming off a hard year. Their skills and stamina have been tested like never before. As a vital component to a patient’s care team, respiratory therapists work hard each day to deliver quality patient care,” said Sheri Tooley, AARC president. “These teams reach high standards and bring specialized skills, unique to respiratory care departments. We are thrilled to honor these organizations as Apex Recognition Award recipients.”

The AARC is dedicated to supporting the respiratory care profession. The award program distinguishes organizations for their commitment to excellence in professional development, evidence-based care, patient safety, patient satisfaction and quality improvement. The Apex Recognition Award includes five categories for recognition: acute care hospitals, long-term care facilities, home medical equipment companies, entry-level educational programs, and dedicated transport teams.

Founded in 1947, the AARC is the leading national and international professional association for respiratory care. The association encourages and promotes professional excellence, advances the science and practice of respiratory care, and advocates for patients, their families, the public, the profession, and the respiratory therapist. Supporting more than 42,000 members worldwide, the AARC is a not-for-profit professional association headquartered in Irving, TX. Learn more about them at

Respiratory care is a specialized area of health care that works closely with individuals suffering from breathing and cardiac disorders. Respiratory therapists are trained on advanced medical equipment and work closely with patients to help them manage their conditions. Boise State offers three programs – an on-campus bachelor of science program for students new to the field; an online degree advancement program for associate degree registered respiratory therapists to advance to a bachelor’s degree ; and the online Master of Science program.

To learn more about Boise State’s Master of Science in Respiratory Care, visit