Dayna Ferrari – Student Highlight

Clinical Medical Assistant student Dayna Ferrari started attending WVJC in August 2020 after graduating from Capital High School.  Dayna said, “My decision to attend WVJC was an easy one.” Dayna has always had an interest in the medical field. She said, “WVJC Clinical Medical Assistant program is fast-track, has smaller classes, and offers a flexible schedule which gave me the confidence to start my college education.”

The Clinical Medical Assistant program at WVJC offers various courses that provide students hands-on training in clinical skills for entry-level positions working in any setting in healthcare. Dayna said, “My favorite class so far is Anatomy and Physiology with Dr. Settle. I have always been enthralled by the inner workings of the body and how it functions.” Another favorite class of Dayna’s is her medical assisting lab class taught by Program Director Chelsea Abbott. She said, “I find the lab work very interesting and hands-on, which helps me focus and retain the information I have learned.”

Dayna has worked as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) for two years. She enjoys helping people but is looking forward to expanding her scope of practice as a Certified Medical Assistant. After graduation, Dayna wants to work as a medical assistant in a pediatric setting. Her long-term goal is to become a Registered Nurse in the pediatric wing of a hospital, married, and have her own home and start a family. In her free time, Dayna enjoys binge-watching her favorite shows on Netflix and researching medical issues taking place around the globe.

We asked Dayna if she has any advice for a new student, she said, “My advice to new students would be to make sure you start on a strong foot, don’t be afraid to talk to your instructors, they understand everything that is going on, big or small.  Get involved in the school; it will help you to succeed more.”

Dayna said, “I would absolutely recommend WVJC to friends and family! Growing up, I always needed one-on-one communication with my teacher; not only did I get that at WVJC, but it also offered an environment where I could focus and buckle down.  The staff is also very understanding in regards to your life outside of school, and the flexible schedule makes it easier to keep my job and focus on my studies without becoming overwhelmed.”

To learn more about WVJC’s Clinical Medical Assistant program, request information here!

MA Strep Test Demonstration

Today, watch Caitlin Syrews – West Virginia Junior College’s Clinical Medical Assistant Program Director, and McKenzie Wright – a current Clinical Medical Assistant student, demonstrate how to perform a rapid strep test.

A rapid strep test is known to be CLIA-waived. The Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments regulate laboratory testing and require clinical laboratories to be certified by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services before accepting human samples for diagnostic testing. Therefore, making these tests simple tests with a low risk for an incorrect result. This demonstration will inform you what to expect when receiving a strep test exam, how to perform, and read the results. Enjoy!

Encompass Health – Externship Highlight

Sue Bolyard, the Program Manager of Hospital Education, gave WVJC Online a peek at what our WVJC Online Clinical Medical Assistant students will experience during their externship at Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Morgantown.

“Your WVJC students will receive training about our rehabilitation patients. We provide medical care and also functional care. Your students will learn glucose monitoring, bladder scanning, transfers, activities of daily living techniques, and how to treat the patient with CPR; Comfort, Professionalism, and Respect,” Sue tells us.

Encompass Health is a national leader in integrated healthcare services that offers both facility-based and home-based patient care through its network of inpatient rehabilitation hospitals, home health agencies, and hospice agencies. The organization is known nationally as it includes 139 hospitals, 241 home health locations, and 82 hospice locations in 39 states and Puerto Rico and has been ranked as one of Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work for. Sue confirms this as she shared with us that there are many benefits and opportunities for their patients, family, and staff.

Speaking of career opportunities, Sue says that the company has benefitted from having WVJC externs, as several WVJC students that have gone through their facility have become employed after training with them. Sue and her team enjoy providing the training and feel accomplished when they watch students gain the experience they will need in their future careers.

Sue shares that there is growth happening within their business. You can expect to see Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Morgantown to be Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Certified along with their current certification from the Joint Commission as a Stroke Center of Excellence. “With the population aging, we are seeing more patients with chronic illnesses and problems that go along with them. Our goal is to improve the quality of their life!” says Sue.

Going into the medical field, you have to be determined but also have care in your heart for your patients. So when entering school, Sue advises students to “study hard, get a degree, be a contributing adult to our society, and take some time to enjoy life with friends and family!”

To learn more about WVJC’s Clinical Medical Assistant program, request information here!

Maddie Owens – Student Highlight

Prior to enrolling at WVJC, Maddie Owens was trying to figure out the right career path for herself. She was enrolled at another institution after graduating high school, but found it wasn’t the best fit. After talking with a few of her friends who were attending WVJC and hearing about their great experience, she decided to look into it for herself. She had always known she wanted to find a career that would allow her to help others and give back to the community, and WVJC’s Clinical Medical Assistant program felt like a great fit for her.

Maddie’s favorite part of WVJC so far has been the teacher-student relationships. “My professors have been so helpful and kind. I am comfortable enough to text, email, or call them at any time.” Her favorite class is her English Composition course taught by Rachel Salvucci. She also loves when Dustin Blankenship helps to teach the class. “He is so approachable and made the learning experience fun.”

Maddie most recently accepted a position as a clinical associate at a local hospital and is excited to become a part of the medical field and continue to grow by furthering her education. Maddie hopes to be working as a medical assistant or a phlebotomist in a hospital or doctor’s office setting after graduating. Her long-term goals include becoming an RN in the next five years.

If you feel that you could benefit from learning more about WVJC’s programs, request information here!

Donna Hendrickson – Graduate Highlight

Donna Hendrickson, CCMA, is a graduate of the Clinical Medical Assistant program at West Virginia Junior College Bridgeport Campus. She originally heard of WVJC from a radio ad and decided to look into the campus. After she visited the campus, she decided to enroll in the program. Donna was always dedicated to her work, grades, and attendance record while a student, and because of that, Donna graduated in August of 2020 with her associate degree and obtained her National Healthcareer Association, Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) certification.

After graduation, she went on to work at the Clarksburg Health Department, where she was working alongside the staff in the fight against COVID-19. While working, Donna decided that she wanted to go back to school for nursing, so she contacted WVJC Bridgeport to further her education. In January of 2021, Donna utilized the bridge program between the Clinical Medical Assistant program and Practical Nursing program to further her career from CMA to Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)*.

Donna says, “I cannot express how much the CMA program changed my life. I would not be accomplishing all that I am in the LPN program without that foundational knowledge.”

Donna’s favorite parts of WVJC are the instructors, the small campus, and how supportive everyone is to each other. She says, “Even after you leave, the instructors like to hear of your news and adventures in your new career.” The instructors that made the biggest impact in her life during her studies as a CMA student were Mrs. Syrews and Ms. Holyfield. In her current studies as a practical nursing student, Ms. Prusa, and Mrs. Foster.

In five years, Donna would like to be in a job that she enjoys, where she is helping patients and making their experience in a medical setting the best it can be, whether it’s working as a school nurse or an LPN in an outpatient setting.

When asked if Donna would recommend WVJC to a friend, Donna smiled and said, “I would definitely recommend WVJC to a friend. There is great support, encouragement, and career guidance if you are willing to commit to studying and attending classes.”

If you’re interested in learning more about the fast-track, career-focused programs at WVJC, request information here!

 

*Passing the NCLEX-PN exam is required to become a Licensed Practical Nurse.

Sarah Jackson – Graduate Highlight

WVJC is eager to introduce you to one of our 2020 Nursing graduates, Sarah Jackson! Sarah started working toward her goal of working in the medical field by completing the Clinical Medical Assistant program. Upon completing and obtaining employment as a medical assistant at the Pediatric Clinic through WVU Medicine, Sarah realized that she loved the healthcare field. It made her want to further her education to “learn how to help people in more ways!”

When determining where to go to college, Sarah said, “I chose WVJC because they were invested in my success. When I chose to go to nursing school, I wanted that same feeling. That kind of tight-knit feeling is why I would recommend WVJC. The small class sizes make it very personal and having a degree in 18 months was appealing. My instructors were caring and dedicated to making us the best nurses we could be. I also made great friends along the way. My favorite instructor was Joanne! She was so special to all of us and was always there to talk when we were having a tough time.”

A required part of the licensing process in WV is the NCLEX. Sarah expressed how she “felt confident that the program gave me all the information I needed to pass the boards.” The school utilizes classroom instruction, ATI curriculum and HURST review to help students to prepare for the NCLEX. Though ATI was not Sarah’s favorite thing, she said it “really did help me with my critical thinking skills.” When asked if Sarah felt prepared for the NCLEX she exclaimed, “As prepared as anyone can be for the scariest test of their life! I knew if I kept studying I would pass, though.”

Sarah now works on a Trauma floor. “It’s a fantastic place to learn how to be a nurse in the real world and prepare me for any future career changes.” Sarah shared this picture with us after she survived her first night on the trauma floor. Her ideal job is working in an emergency department. Long-term, she hopes to find herself living in Oregon working in an ED (Emergency Department) and “loving my life as a nurse!”

If you are interested in starting nursing school, request information here!

Cheslea Brown – Student Highlight

Clinical Medical Assistant student Cheslea Brown began taking classes at WVJC in September 2020.  Before starting classes at WVJC, Cheslea was a stay-at-home mom to her three children. She had never attended college before, but she knew it was time to further her education.  She decided to come to WVJC because of the small classroom environment and the welcoming staff. Cheslea’s motivation is to provide her family with a better future.

Cheslea said, “My favorite part about attending WVJC is how everyone wants to see you succeed, and they are there to help you.” Cheslea has enjoyed all of the instructors at WVJC. She said, “They are very kind and treat you respectfully.” Cheslea is looking forward to taking her medical assisting lab classes the most. During lab classes, students learn how to take vital signs, perform EKGs, phlebotomy, obtain specimens, assist with minor office procedures, and so much more!  She said, “The lab classes will help me better understand how things work, and I will gain the hands-on experience to prepare me for my career.”

In Cheslea’s free time, she enjoys spending time with her children, listening to music, and singing.  After Cheslea graduates from the Clinical Medical Assistant Program, she would like to further her education in the Associate Degree in Nursing Program at WVJC. In the next five years, she sees herself as a licensed Registered Nurse.  She said, “I want to fulfill my passion for caring for others and having job stability.”

Cheslea said, “I would recommend WVJC to anyone I know because it is a great atmosphere, the staff is friendly, and they truly want to see you succeed.” If you are interested in learning more about the fast track, career-focused programs at WVJC, request information here!

Lindsey Thomas – Student Highlight

Lindsey Thomas is a WVJC student in our online Clinical Medical Assistant program and is a CNA at a local hospital. After hearing WVJC’s commercial on the radio, she decided to go online and request more information.

After a few phone conversations with an admissions advisor, Lindsey made her decision. “I remember thinking, wow, these people are truly on my side. They want me to succeed. They’ll push me to do my best, and they’ll let me know how to do better if I’m not.”

Lindsey’s college experience wasn’t always this way. Before attending WVJC, Lindsey was a student at another institution. She felt the class sizes were too big, and she wasn’t getting the help she needed from instructors, which led Lindsey to feel overwhelmed. Now, with attending WVJC Online, Lindsey is able to have the flexibility she needs to further her education while still spending time with family and working full-time.

Lindsey chose to enroll in the Clinical Medical Assistant program because she feels it will allow her to broaden her skills in the healthcare field. The program’s credentials will allow her to enjoy the best of both worlds between administrative tasks and direct patient care.

Lindsey’s favorite class so far has been Psychology. She has always been fascinated by the human mind, and she loves being able to understand different behaviors and developments.

A perfect day for Lindsey would involve spending the day with her family and indulging in her favorite junk food – potato chips.

After graduating, Lindsey’s ideal position would be working in a doctor’s office or specialty practice, such as gynecology and obstetrics or pediatrics. If you’re interested in getting more information about WVJC’s fast-track online Clinical Medical Assistant program or any other program, request information here!

Tonya Williams – Student Highlight


Tonya Williams is a medical assisting student at West Virginia Junior College Bridgeport.Tonya began her higher education journey in 1999 at Fairmont State College and by the end of 2000, she found that it wasn’t quite the right fit for her. Tonya took some time off and became a pharmacy technician at a local CVS. As she moved through her time there, she caught herself wanting to know more and understand the medication she was handling every day. After some research, Tonya found West Virginia Junior College.

During her tour of the campus, Tonya noticed how nice the size of the classes were compared to her last college experience. She really could see that the students were able to have one on one time with their instructors and that mattered most to her, in addition to a quality education. After her tour, she decided that the Clinical Medical Assistant program was a good fit for her. Tonya tells us her favorite part of attending WVJC is “the helpful instructors and class sizes.” Her favorite class is Clinical Laboratory Procedures because she gets to draw blood!

After graduation, Tonya wants to be working as a certified medical assistant helping veterans. In 5 years, she wants to be living comfortably with a full or part-time job with minimum debt. Until then, she will take a relaxing day at camp.

If your journey sounds similar to Tonya’s, request information here!

Kaitlyn Pack – Student Highlight

Kaitlyn Pack graduated from Herbert Hoover High School in 2019. During her senior year, Kaitlyn was trying to decide where she wanted to go to college. She met with High School Admissions Advisor, Stephanie Duncan, while she was still in high school. “Stephanie is the reason I am here at WVJC! She told me WVJC is a lot of fun, and we are like a big family, and I am now part of the WVJC family!” Kaitlyn knew she wanted to be close to home, and after exploring her options, she decided WVJC was the best fit for her!

It was an easy decision for Kaitlyn to pursue an education for an Associate Degree in Clinical Medical Assistant because she has always loved the medical field! Kaitlyn said, “My favorite part about attending WVJC is the teachers! Everyone is like a big family! We all communicate, and everyone is there if you need them, no matter the situation.”

She continued, “My favorite person at WVJC is Mrs. Kellie! She is always in a good mood, and when I see her, it makes me happy because she is always happy!”  We asked Kaitlyn what her favorite medical assisting class was, and she said, “Clinical Laboratory Procedures is my favorite class because we got to take blood, and I loved it!” It seems like just yesterday that Kaitlyn started college at WVJC!  Now she is preparing for her externship and is looking forward to applying her medical skills in a hands-on medical office.

After graduation, Kaitlyn hopes to get a job as a medical assistant at a hospital. She would like to relocate to North Carolina or South Carolina.  In 5 years, Kaitlyn would like to be working as a medical assistant, have her own house, and driving a nice car. Kaitlyn said, “I would refer a friend to WVJC because it is a friendly place. The staff and students are all friendly, and if you want close to home, this WVJC is the place to go!” If you would like to know more about the fast-track medical assisting training program or other programs at WVJC, request information here!