Nicole Jones – Externship Highlight

So you’ve gotten in to college and now you’ve gotten through a few courses and find yourself thinking about entering the work force. With a few more courses and graduation in sight, you find yourself applying for one of the most exciting parts of the Clinical Medical Assistant program, the externship!

Please meet WVJC-Charleston  Clinical Medical Assistant student, Nicole Jones. Nicole wanted to extend her medical career into medical assisting because of her experience in coding. Nicole’s training increased her marketable skills to not just working the front and back of the medical office, but also to providing patient care. Nicole has her sights set on furthering her career in a medical office and working her way up to office manager. Nicole is scheduled to graduate this winter and is very excited!

Nicole has always been fascinated by the medical field. When asked what her favorite course was, she said “I loved all of my lab classes. Getting to be hands on was fun and I learned a lot more because I’m a really hands on learner”. Hands-on learning is one of the fundamental strengths of the Clinical Medical Assistant program at WVJC. Instructors encourage students to not onl

y participate in class and labs, but also stress the importance of externships to gain even more in-field training and experience.

There are many externship sites that partner with WVJC and often, students can tour sites to decide which externship would be best for them. Nicole decided to apply for a medical office that she recently the opportunity to learn it presented. After making this decision, Nicole spoke with the onsite manager and told him she was very interested in gaining experience at that location. After a few phone calls and assistance from the Medical Director at WVJC – Charleston, Ms. Chelsea Abbott, Nicole had an interview!

Nicole spent a few months working at her externship site and really enjoyed it! She will start orientation this October for full time employment. Nicole said that if students are looking for externships, she has a few tips. Nicole stressed that students need to “show up and be dependable.” She continued, saying “You should treat you externship like you are interviewing for a job. Do things to help even when you are not asked. Lastly, actually take the time to show interest and ask questions.”

Nicole is very grateful for all the staff and instructors who have been amazing to her and she said she had learned so much. “I will miss them all!” she said. At 31, Nicole is a mother to three kids. She wanted to provide a better life for her children and to show them to never give up on their dreams.

Do you have a dream like Nicole? Do  you have career goals like she did and want to continue education to learn valuable skills that will be more marketable to employers, AND provide a better life for yourself and your family? If you value education like Nicole and are hardworking, then come see us at WVJC to learn how we can help you find a career!

Warren Preece – Student Highlight

One of the great things about West Virginia Junior College Online is the humanization that occurs in the online environment.  Now, if you are reading this and have never experienced an online course somewhere along the way; that statement might sound a little odd. How is it possible to humanize a virtual environment?  To explain that, I want to introduce you to Warren Preece.

Warren has a story similar to so many students in our school. He went to college right out of high school, ended up making the mistakes that so many make by not attending classes, letting immaturity get the best of him, etc. Warren was in college for a year, and ultimately ended up leaving school and going to work.

Warren went to work at various retail store locations, and was working for a large grocery store chain when he decided that there had to be something more for himself and his family. So, he took a look at WVJC. After working with admissions, he determined that taking classes online was his best chance at something more, because he could continue working and supporting his family, while attending school on his own time. While he expected to have the flexibility he needed, he quickly found that his other favorite part about attending WVJC was the faculty. “I also love the faculty and how helpful and understanding they have been.” – Preece

The reason, Preece says, that this became his other favorite part about attending WVJC was that he met a much greater challenge while attending school this time than he did in his first attempt at college. You see, Warren found himself diagnosed with a very serious illness, one that would stop most people in their tracks in all phases of their life, but it wouldn’t stop Warren. “I wasn’t sure I was going to continue (due to the illness).  I was getting behind on my work. My teachers (were) so understanding and supportive. I cannot thank them  enough for everything they have done.”  Warren and the faculty that he worked with were able to communicate and work through his struggles to make sure he could continue in school during this very difficult time and the faculty was as happy as anyone when his health status improved.

Now, with a positive outlook on his health, Warren looks to his future. Ultimately, he wants to make sure that in five years he is with his family, healthy, and happy. However, happy includes fulfilling his dream of owning his own business, which he feels he will be vastly prepared for upon completing his program.

Warren was able to experience the human element of WVJC’s online program, which is something that we pride ourselves on. Whether it is through video based discussions, faculty that are quick to respond and seek relationships with students that lead to success, or the interaction with peers from class to class, these are services that WVJC Online strives to provide to every student.

If this sounds like the type of online education that would make you successful, check out our website at wvjc.edu or give us a call today at 877-25ONLINE!

Steps to Apply for Admission to the Practical Nursing Program

There is no doubt about it. Nurses are heroes! They help people through their most trying times. If you choose to become a practical nurse, you will be entering an honorable profession with a long history of serving your fellow human beings. Working in the field of healthcare is something you can be proud of throughout your entire career.

An LPN works under the supervision of doctors and RNs, performing duties such as taking vital signs, collecting samples, administering medications, ensuring patient comfort, and reporting the status of their patients to the other nurses.

Many different types of healthcare facilities hire practical nurses. In this field, you might get the opportunity to work in home care, nursing homes, long-term care facilities, hospice care, rehab clinics, group homes, outpatient centers, medical offices, or hospitals. Your training is portable throughout your entire state and there are many different types of facilities to choose from.

Considerations into the West Virginia Junior College Practical Nursing program are based upon the following:

  • Student must score an overall proficient score on the HESI A2 entrance exam or meet the cut score results of:
  • English Language Composite Score: 70%
  • Math: 65%

* Cumulative Scores will be reviewed by the program director and will be considered on an individual basis.

  • Interview with the Practical Nursing Program Director and Clinical Coordinator/Instructor.
  • Essay (one page double spaced) on why you have chosen to be a practical nurse and why you chose WVJC. (Please sign and date your essay.)
  • 2 References (educational, spiritual, or current/former employer). Please submit on business letterhead and include name, phone number, or email address.
  • Comparative High School GPA or GED

These items will be evaluated and scored. The WVJC Practical Nursing Director and Clinical Coordinator will then analyze each applicant and reserve the right to make the final decision in regard to acceptance into the program. The following items must be completed prior to the first day of class. You will need to satisfactorily complete all of the following Nursing Program Requirements. These requirements are as follows:

  • Physical Exam – All areas of the “History & Physical Exam Form” must be completed and signed by your healthcare provider with a recommendation for admission.
  • Immunizations/Titers & 2-Step PPD Testing – All areas of the “Immunization Record” and the “Tuberculosis Screening Form” must be completed by your healthcare provider. All appropriate documentation must be submitted with this form.
  • State and Federal Criminal Background Checks – Complete both state and federal criminal background checks with an acceptable status.
  • Drug Screening – Results of drug screening must be “negative” for non-prescription and/or illegal drugs. Verification via current valid prescription for any medications you may be taking that result in a positive/false positive will be required.
  • Proof of Current CPR Training – Complete the American Heart Association Basic Life Support for Health Care Provider course and submit a copy of your certification to the WVJC Practical Nursing Director.
  • Uniforms – Fitted for appropriate uniforms and ID Badge obtained.
  • Child Abuse Clearance – Complete the Child Abuse Clearance form.

If you are interested in joining the ranks of Practical Nursing heroes in West Virginia, request information here today!

Katie Eaton – Student Highlight

As teenagers, many of us had time in the chair at the dentist or orthodontist office. Often, this isn’t such a great experience, but in the long run it makes for a better smile! Meet Katie Eaton, a current dental assisting student at WVJC Charleston. Katie became interested in dental assisting when she had braces as a teenager. Katie also serves as the President and is actively involved in WVJC’s Dental Club. She says that it has been a phenomenal experience and loves being involved. Katie is also an avid reader and is always listening to music.

Being a young mother, Katie says that she is motivated by her family to pursue a meaningful career. “I have a passion for learning and trying new things, so dental assisting is just a step in my journey. I am excited to further my career.” Once she graduates from the Dental Assisting program, Katie plans on pursuing something in the field of psychology. She wants to continue to learn and strive to be an example of success for her family.

Katie said, “I chose WVJC because they offer an associate degree after only 18 months of hands-on learning in my desired program”. She wants to get out soon and begin working so she can support her family. When asked how WVJC helps her, Katie said, “The instructors ensure that I’m meeting all requirements needed to pass my classes. They genuinely care for each student. This really helps in reaching my goals.”

Katie hasn’t just enjoyed her classes and extracurriculars while at WVJC. She also enjoys the student services WVJC offers to help students gain employment after they are finished with their degree. “Meeting new people and networking with different employers has been a wonderful opportunity. It’s very refreshing to know that even while enrolled we can still get our names out there.” WVJC Charleston held their annual career fair on August 23rd, 2019, where about 30 employers met and spoke with students.

Medical Terminology has been one of Katie’s favorite classes so far. She loves to learn and is excited about the variety of courses WVJC offers. Katie said the Dental Program Director, Renee Rollins, always goes above and beyond to teach students what they need to know and provide an outstanding environment.

Katie lights up when asked about giving advice to other students who are attending school and may experience some struggles along the way. Katie says to “power through the fear and just get started. Also, stay focused and worry about your school work first.”

Katie urges anyone interested in WVJC to come and learn for themselves. “You will not regret your decision to attend, just make school a priority. Putting your schooling first will secure your degree and will be well worth the time spent earning it.” For more information, visit wvjc.edu!

Five Tips and Tricks for a Successful Online Student

The life of an online student can be especially rewarding and full of personal and professional successes – from acing an exam while working a full-time job to nailing a discussion post while caring for a newborn, and everything in between. There are so many opportunities and the online platform provides the necessary flexibility to manage all those endeavors and still succeed in obtaining your degree.

Five Tips and Tricks for a Successful Online Student

Unfortunately, the same flexibility that can help online students be successful, can also lead to disastrous results without attentiveness, time management, and confidence. Sometimes, flexibility leads us to decide that we can “kick the can down the road,” putting off that homework assignment or lecture until tomorrow. Because of this, two students with similar abilities, in the same course, at the same time can have totally different results.

Fortunately, there are a number of tips and tricks that one can utilize to improve their chances of success as an online student and increase their performance at the same time. The tricks are tried and true and are helpful whether you’re brand new to online learning or a seasoned veteran. As the WVJC Online Orientation Coordinator, I work with our new students in developing these habits so that they are ready to run, excel, and most importantly, succeed.

Number 5 – Manage Distractions

Imagine this: While driving, your phone begins to ding with a dozen text messages all being delivered at the same time; the music on your stereo accidentally gets turned up to max; your child begins to scream, cry, and kick the back of your seat; and the car right in front of you slams on their brakes. BAM! You would have avoided the accident, but unfortunately, you were too distracted to notice the car in front of you before it was too late.

The scenario above is not so different when it comes to doing online coursework. When listening to lectures, reviewing for exams, or doing assignments, you may be tempted by the thousand other things going on in your world. It is important to try to find a separate time and place away from distractions so that you can focus on the work in front of you. For some, that means waiting to work on your assignments until after your children go to sleep, for others that means doing your work at the local library or after work at your desk. Regardless of what approach you use, managing distractions is the first step in success as an online student.

Number 4 – Communication

Five Tips and Tricks for a Successful Online Student
(Photo Credit: @LanguageDalek (Twitter))

Sometimes assignments are confusing. Sometimes you will get distracted. Sometimes you won’t be able to see the forest for the trees. You need to know that that is okay and that it happens to all of us at one time or another. There are so many times that I’ve been preparing for a lecture and gotten lost in my own thoughts. This doesn’t mean that there’s something wrong with you. It also doesn’t necessarily mean there’s something wrong with the assignment or lecture you’re reviewing. Sometimes the way information is communicated and the way we comprehend just happen to be working on two different wavelengths.

The solution to this is simple, but often we do the wrong thing. So many times, I’ve seen students shut down or just decide to not turn in an assignment when confused. The solution? Communicate. Reach out to the instructor via phone, text, email, etc. Explain what you are struggling with. Word of advice: Ask specific questions. Good communication will always remedy the worst confusion.

Number 3 – Time Management

I feel like I preach this to my students constantly to the point that saying “time management” probably makes their ears want to bleed. However, it is incredibly important to manage your time effectively when you are working as an online student.

You need to develop a schedule that works for you. Plan for assignments and lectures as they’re due and work on them throughout the week. Schedule in your work as well as things like laundry and dinner. One thing that works incredibly well is to schedule in a reward time as well as leisure time. Plan to take some time out of your week to relax and enjoy yourself. I have a couple of students who bank that time until the weekend. They complete all of their assignments Monday through Friday while working a weekly job, then on the weekend, they plan adventures as a reward for finishing their assignments on time. If they are unable to complete their assignments, no adventure that week, BUT, they still are able to finish them before they are due on Sunday because they have managed their time effectively.

Keep a planner. Use a Google or Outlook calendar. Do whatever works for you, but definitely begin planning early if you want to be successful both as a student and in life.

Number 2 – Confidence

This one may seem short compared to the others, but confidence is key. As an online student, it is really easy to become intimidated by your instructors or even your classmates because you aren’t face-to-face with them each day. It is important to remember that all of us are people and that your fellow students are here to learn and grow just like you and your instructors are here because they are passionate about teaching and have a burning desire to help you achieve your dreams.

One of the most disheartening things I see is a student who is afraid to speak up. Engage with your classmates and your instructor on discussion posts. Contact your instructor and ask them questions about the subject matter. (Even if it’s not something in the assignments, we love this stuff and we will always be happy to engage).

Believe in yourself and your abilities. You are enough. You are able. You can succeed. Show everyone else what you already know – that you are strong and your dreams are within your reach.

 

Number 1 – Understand “You”

I always smile when making this kind of list because it’s so easy for someone to sit here and tell you how to do something when they aren’t in your shoes. Though I have seen these tips and tricks work for students of all ages, it doesn’t mean that everything works exactly the same way for everyone. When speaking about education, everyone has their own learning style and you should never put yourself in a box. For example, if you are a “white board” person –meaning you like to make a large list on a white board and cross it off as you complete it –then, by all means, continue to do that in place of using a planner. Do what works for you. Each of these tips is broad so that you can determine what approach to it will help you find the most success.

If you are struggling to find a solution or you feel like you need more advice (or just someone to spitball study habits ideas off of) please feel free to reach out to me at dblankenship@wvjc.edu. I am always happy to help a student looking to improve themselves and have been in your shoes, so please utilize me as a resource.

Jess Lowe – Admissions Advisor Highlight

Hi!  My name is Jess Lowe and I am the High School Admissions Advisor for WVJC Morgantown and Online! I’ve been a part of the WVJC family for about a year and a half, and my favorite part of working here, aside from all the amazing students and families that I get to help, is working alongside such dedicated and caring faculty and staff.

I am the proud mom of 3 amazing kids and I have a strong belief that each new day provides the opportunity to do better than the day before, which usually means I’m in pursuit of some goal! Those goals vary, but are often related to exercise, eating healthy, reading a new book, or watching a documentary. I spend a lot of time with my family, enjoy music of any kind (except new country), and love to hike/ camp, read, bake, garden, and crochet. I’m super competitive and play a lot of card and board games with my family.

I absolutely love to explore and someday hope to spend my retirement traveling the continent in my Food Truck. This will allow me to fulfill my lifelong dream of living completely untethered to any particular place and meeting as many people and experiencing as many different cultures as possible.  My first stop is going to be Red Rocks Amphitheater near Denver, Colorado. Stop by and let me know which other areas I should put on my bucket list.

If you are a high school senior, there is a good chance that you will meet with me on your journey toward college. If you have any questions about WVJC, would like to tour our campus, or need to know the next scholarship deadline, feel free to reach out to me at lowe.jessica@wvjc.edu. I look forward to meeting you!

Marrissa Merill – Student Highlight

Marrissa Merill is attending West Virginia Junior College Bridgeport where she will soon obtain her associate degree in Dental Assisting. In December, Marrissa will be sitting for the National Registered Dental Assisting certification exam. She is anxiously awaiting her test date. However, she feels confident that her education has prepared her for success. Marrissa began her career at WVJC shortly after graduating from Lincoln High School. She spent several years being a waitress and realized she wanted a career instead.

Marrissa has always had a passion for the dental field but wasn’t sold on the idea “completely”, until entering the Dental Terminology course at WVJC.  At this point, she realized how passionate she was about teeth and the importance of oral hygiene. The Dental Terminology class was her favorite for many reasons. It helped her realize she was in the right field and she enjoyed learning all the proper terms and the order of teeth.

During her time at WVJC, Marrissa has had many great instructors, but two in particular have inspired her the most, Mr. Cutright and Mrs. Holyfield. “These two instructors are passionate about teaching and making sure their students succeed. They inspired me to strive for greatness.” During her education, Marrissa is required to complete 160 hours of externship. She has already completed 60 hours at Mountaineer Orthodontics. During this time she has gained the hands-on experience that is needed to further her education and career. “I have learned so much and love being a part of their team.”  Marrissa is looking forward to completing the remaining 100 hours in General Dentistry.

Marrissa has already been offered a full-time Dental Assisting position upon graduation in December.  She is excited to graduate and begin her career in a reputable dental facility. We enjoyed having Marrissa at our Bridgeport campus and are confident she will achieve greatness in her career.  She offers a quote to anyone that is undecided about their future, “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing” (Walt Disney).

Maurice Faulkner – Student Highlight

Maurice Faulkner is a student in the Network Administration/Security program at WVJC Charleston. Maurice picked WVJC because it was local and easily accessible. Maurice was interested in a career that is in high demand and included his love of technology and computers. Having heard the commercials for WVJC, he decided to schedule an appointment to see if this was the right college for him. Right away he noticed the friendly environment. “It just felt like it was the right choice.” He learned that he could start on the path toward a career he was interested in and the environment was positive and encouraging.

Maurice’s interests include video games and working on computers. “I enjoy taking apart things and putting them back together while learning how they work,” Maurice said.  His curiosity has fueled his career choice. Maurice said, “Technology jobs are moving into the future of day to day lifestyle.” He couldn’t be more on point with the high demands of IT professionals and the increasing developments in technology.  Our IT department offers an enriched experience that will prepare students for various IT positions and establish a mindset for growth.

Maurice speaks highly of his experience at WVJC and he enjoys the environment.  Like other students, Maurice feels that the WVJC faculty and staff really do care about student success, as evident in WVJC’s core values. WVJC’s core values include: work ethic, exemplary, caring, accountability, relationships and excellence (WE CARE). Maurice emphasized that he enjoyed this approach and other learning aspects WVJC promotes. Maurice wanted to recognize Instructor Bill Sigler and IT Director, Tom Pinkerton. “They have taught me a bunch. Whether it be computers or networking. I think they go beyond to help the students to succeed.”

Maurice says “if anyone was wanting to better their life and start a great future on the path to success, then they should pick WVJC because it’s a friendly college and the staff members are nice and professional. The teachers teach you many things at this college and if you pay attention, you will succeed.”  Maurice is gearing up to complete his degree next year.

To other potential students, Maurice says to “Keep your head up and pay attention to what the instructors and directors have to say. Show up and get involved during the study groups. If your program has a club, help in the club. It’s a good experience if you put your mind to it because the college is there to help anyone who is willing to learn.” After graduation, Maurice wants to find a position in networking or computer repairs and then pursue a bachelor’s degree in computer science.

Maurice has found the perfect way to integrate his past experiences and a passion for technology and computers. Maurice served as a firefighter for four years. Firefighters are equipped with problem-solving skills to tackle an emergency effectively and safely. Networking Administration/Security shares the same mindset as fighting fires. Maurice needs to see the smaller inner workings of the big picture to plan his approach. This is another example of a student focused on a career that incorporates his previous experience and interests.

Have you thought about a career that will not feel like a job? Have you had other adventures that can apply in finding your career? Find your next adventure with interest at www.wvjc.edu today!

Lisa Phillips – Graduate Highlight

Lisa Phillips is a graduate of WVJC Online’s Clinical Medical Assistant program.  Lisa is employed in her field and loves what she does.  However, to really understand her story, we have to go back to the beginning.

Lisa, like so many others, jumped right into college after high school.  After a short time, she felt that it was not a good fit and exited that school.  She went home, found a job working as a receptionist in a medical clinic, and started a family.. but always knew there was more.

When she decided to go back, she did her research.  “I did my research and spoke with a few people who I knew that attended WVJC and they told me how great of an experience they had. I knew then that it was time to make the leap and apply. I chose to attend WVJC for the Clinical Medical Assistant program, because I love the healthcare field.”

When we asked her why she chose WVJC, she said “I love the healthcare field. I have been a CNA since 2007 and wanted to further my career in the health field. I chose healthcare, because I love to help people and learn new things every day.”

Once in school, she found the experience to be everything she had heard about.  “My favorite part of attending WVJC was that it was very convenient for a mom of two daughters who was also working full time. They were very easy to work with and helped me with any questions and concerns I ever had. I admired all of the teachers that I had while attending.”

Now that Lisa is a graduate, she truly has found success.  “We have an amazing team here (at her new career) and I get to work with multiple specialties on a weekly basis. I am learning so much and gaining a ton of experience. I am employed as a Medical Assistant. I help to room the patients and gather their medical histories in order for the providers to know everything they can prior to their visit. I also help assist with procedures such as corticosteroid injections, catheterizations, etc.”

Lisa said, “I would refer anyone to WVJC if they wanted to further their career path, because they have been wonderful to me and helped me the whole way through. Day, night, weekends, holidays, if I had questions they were there to listen. Don’t be afraid to take the plunge and go for it. It’s never too late.”

If you are interested in taking Lisa’s advice and learning more about what WVJC has to offer, click HERE.

Mon Health Medical Center – Externship Highlight

West Virginia Junior College and Mon Health Medical Center have had a working relationship for the past few years. Mon Health Medical Center accepts Clinical Medical Assistant, Medical Office Administration,  and Pharmacy Technician students to complete their externship hours with the facility, as well as Nursing students for their clinical hours. During the last few years, many students have not only completed their externship and clinical hours with Mon Health Medical Center, but have also been hired for full-time employment. Mon Health Medical Center has a large need for nurses and certified medical assistants, and West Virginia Junior College is proud to be affiliated with the facility.

Mon Health is always expanding, growing the opportunity for West Virginia Junior College students and graduates. Mon Health is the “parent” company of Mon Health Medical Center, Mon Health Preston Memorial Hospital and Mon Health Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital. It was formed in 1982 to aid in strategic planning and to manage all of its affiliated entities under a common philosophy. Mon Health Medical Center is the flagship member of Mon Health. The 189 bed hospital traces its roots back to the first hospital in Monongalia County in the early 1900s, and was officially established by an act of the Monongalia County Court in April 1943.

The hospital has a strong commitment to providing personalized care and service with compassion and respect to North Central West Virginia, southwestern Pennsylvania, and the surrounding region. The more than 250 physicians with privileges at the hospital have a long history of dedication to the community and hospital, with a wide range of specialties including Cardiology, Cardiothoracic Surgery, Family Medicine, General Surgery, Neurology, Obstetrics/Gynecology, Oculofacial Surgery, Oncology, Orthopedics, Psychiatry & Behavioral Health, and Rheumatology.

While there are a number of steps a student must complete before being able to start their externship or clinicals at Mon Health Medical Center, students are happy to oblige. Students are excited to not only have an opportunity to work in such an upstanding health center, but to also have the possibility of starting a career there. West Virginia Junior College is looking forward to the growth of Mon Health and our continuing partnership!