Cleah Slack – Student Highlight

Cleah Slack graduated from Lincoln County High School in 2019. During her senior year, an admissions advisor visited her class to discuss the specialized associate degree programs at WVJC. After the presentation, Cleah knew she wanted to apply for college at WVJC. She was looking for a short-term program that would help prepare her for a career. Cleah said, “It was important to me to be able to get a great education and earn an Associate Degree in Dental Assisting in a short 18 months.”

When asked about her long term goals, she said she would like to further her education and become a dental hygienist. She said, “I have always been very detail-oriented and really wanted to make sure the dental field was the right path for me and that is why I decided dental assisting was the best first step.” Cleah loves her dental assisting classes because of the hands-on activities and Mrs. Rollins style of teaching. Cleah noted, “Mrs. Rollins is such a great teacher. She makes sure everyone in class understands the material. Our dental classes are small and very hands-on, so everyone gets a feel for what we are doing.” Cleah has enjoyed her time at West Virginia Junior College because of the caring atmosphere and fast-track program. She said, “I love the wonderful instructors and I’ve also made lifelong friends.”

Cleah is flying through her Dental Assisting program at WVJC! She is an excellent student with nearly perfect attendance and a President’s List recipient. In addition to her excellent academic achievement, Cleah also volunteers as a Student Ambassador for the dental assisting program. She assists with new student orientation, school events, and offers tutoring services for students. We cannot wait to see all that Cleah accomplishes after graduating from WVJC! If you would like to know more about the fast track dental program or other programs at WVJC, please visit for more information and apply today!

Meet Dental Assisting Program Director, Ariel Alderson!

Six weeks come and go quickly, according to one of our newest faculty members Ariel Alderson.  She is new to the teaching field but not new to dental assisting world.  According to Ariel, “having the opportunity to educate in the field she is passionate about is extremely rewarding.”  Even though the six weeks fly by as an educator, the knowledge gained and the positive work environment drives the students and Ariel to continued success.

Ariel graduated from West Virginia Junior College’s Dental Assisting program in 2014.  She graduated from the WVJC Dental Assisting program and couldn’t wait to join the workforce. She was ready and excited to put her skills and knowledge to work.  She began her Dental Assisting career with Dr. Lacy, Weidman and Hazey.  This was an exciting time in her life because she was finally putting her passion into place and striving to continue to learn more from the hands on experience under such great dentists.

After some time in the dental field, Ariel knew that her passion to work in the field was not enough.  She applied for the Dental Assisting job at WVJC, where she wanted to not only show off her talents but also help the young minds of today learn the importance of their jobs and day to day responsibilities.   She began her career at WVJC in 2018  as the Dental Assisting Coordinator.  After only a few months of teaching, she is confident that she made the right choice and takes great pride in her job every day “in guiding the young minds toward success.”

When Ariel is not at work she is spending time with her family.  She married the love of her life Tyler in 2015.  They now share two daughters that take up most of their time but “they wouldn’t have it any other way.”  Every day, Ariel and her husband, strive to be the best parents they can be so that one day they will be just as successful as they are.

Ariel is not only a wife, mother and teacher but passionate about her health as well.  She sells “IT Works” on the side to not only make some extra money, but to help the world know and understand the importance of a healthy life style.

Dental Assisting Student Highlight-Kourtney Patrick

Kourtney PatrickKourtney Patrick was leading an exciting career as a Promotions Manager at WV Radio Corporation when she found out she was pregnant…..with twins! She was overjoyed at the news, but also knew it would be hard to keep up the demanding pace of live radio after the birth of her babies. Being on call 24/7, managing seven radio stations and overseeing all live events hosted by those stations – she was one busy woman!

After the birth of her twins, Kourtney decided not to go back to her job in radio. She wanted to be able to stay at home with her new babies and focus on being a wife and a mom. Four years later Kourtney was ecstatic to find out she was pregnant again. This time triplets were in her future! Needless to say, a household with 5 small children was sure to keep her on her toes!

When her children started school, Kourtney suddenly found herself with some free time again. She began thinking about working outside of the home, and started dreaming of what she would like to do. “I wanted a job that would be viable in any state; just in case we would ever have to move” Kourtney says. It was at this point she began thinking of a career in the Dental field. After doing a quick search she came upon our website and requested more information on our programs. The very next day she received a phone call from our Adult Admissions Representative, Kellie Moore, inviting her to the campus for an interview and a personal tour.

After finishing the campus tour, Kourtney knew this was where she was meant to be. “The atmosphere was so friendly, and everyone felt like a big family.” The class schedule could not have been any better either. A Monday–Thursday schedule with the earliest class starting at 8:00AM and the last class ending at 2:10PM. This would allow her to see her children off to school every morning and meet them at the bus stop each afternoon. Kourtney says, “It was perfect! I knew at that point God had definitely brought me to West Virginia Junior College.”

Kourtney says her favorite Instructor at WVJC has been Mrs. Rebecca Shamblin. “During the last six-week session, I had her for two back to back classes. She is such a good teacher and you never get bored listening to her.” Mrs. Rebecca Shamblin is the Dental Assisting Program Director here at the Charleston campus; she holds an Associates of Science Degree in Dental Hygiene as well as a Regents Bachelor of Arts Degree with a minor in English Literature. Mrs. Shamblin is also a Certified Dental Assistant and a Registered Dental Hygienist. If you have any kind of dental question, she is the lady to see!

When asked about her long-term goals, Kourtney responded, “I would love to work in a Pediatric Dentist Office. I know many people, especially children, fear having dental work done and I feel I could use my people skills to help ease the nervous patients. Also, I want to further my education and get my Orthodontic License.”

If you are interested in the Dental field, come check out our Dental Assisting Program at the West Virginia Junior College Charleston Campus! We would love to give you more information about our school and take you on a tour of our facility. Just listen to Kourtney’s advice, “Pursue the career you want. Don’t give up. Get your support system and do it!” Please call us at 304-345-2820 or request info to set up your own personal interview now!

For important information about the educational debt, earnings, and completion rates of students who attended this program CLICK HERE