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!

Chantel Garrett – Student Highlight

Medical Assisting student, Chantel Garrett, decided to contact WVJC to learn more about our fast-track healthcare programs. Chantel attended a local community college before attending WVJC, but it was not the right fit. When she entered the doors at WVJC, she knew she selected the right college to further her education! She said, “I decided to attend WVJC because of the atmosphere and support from every person I interacted with.”

Chantel has always been interested in the medical field. She said, “I love to take care of people and help others.” Before attending WVJC, Chantel was working as a caregiver. She enjoyed her job, but she felt stuck. Chantel understands the importance of education and is excited about her career opportunities once she earns her diploma.

The classes at WVJC are designed for students to get hands-on training, so graduates are ready for careers upon graduation. Chantel‘s Medical Assisting Diploma program is flying by. She has already completed her clinical lab classes, so she now has the skills to complete vital signs, phlebotomy, EKG, assist with minor office surgeries, and so much more!

We asked Chantel about her favorite part about attending WVJC, and she said, “The open-door policy is my favorite. I know someone is always available to listen to me.”

If you are ready for a change and looking for a career, request information here!

Pharmacy Technician – Progam Highlight

Jamie McGuire, the WVJC Pharmacy Technician Program Director, beamed with excitement when we sat down to discuss the advantages students have when attending the WVJC Online Pharmacy Technician Program.

“Pharmacy technicians are in demand within many versatile settings,” Jamie tells us. These settings include hospital and clinic pharmacies, community and retail pharmacies, veterinary pharmacies, and pharmacies in primary care organizations. It is also no surprise to find pharmacy technicians in education and training settings, prisons, the military, and pharmaceutical production or sales in the pharmaceutical industry. In WVJC’s program, we assist our students with obtaining the knowledge and skills necessary to pursue a position in any of these pharmaceutical areas.

Through the WVJC Online Pharmacy Technician Program, students can expect to learn how to compound medications, assemble medication for prescriptions, fill and label prescriptions, and verify the accuracy of those orders. Students also learn how to provide patients and other healthcare professionals with relevant information regarding medications. Within their roles as pharmacy technicians, these foundational skills are the gateway for advancement. WVJC’s program also gives students an understanding of medication therapy management, insurance and billing, and specialized medications such as chemotherapy. Our pharmacy technician students not only learn these skills, but also get to bring these learning concepts to life as they participate in hands-on training through weekend clinical activities, externship experiences, and WVJC’s new customized pharmacy technician simulation training. Alongside the simulation training, WVJC Online students will receive a home kit completed with the tools they need to get hands-on training right in their home, so they feel confident on their first day of externship and as they start to merge into their career.

When asked which characteristics students need to succeed in this career, Jamie replied, “someone that is ready to go on an adventure! Most individuals think that it is academics or ‘book smarts’ that will make them succeed in this field. However, it is not just academics. Many mistakes happen during the learning process, and they have to be able to learn from those mistakes and let them go. Students that are willing to work hard and willing to push forward are the ones that succeed.”

Not only is the academic experience an adventure for WVJC Online students, but the career progression for pharmacy technicians looks promising for a fulfilled career journey. As pharmacists continue to evolve to provide more direct patient care, you can expect to see an evolution in the role of pharmacy technicians as well. We are already witnessing the first steps into the future of pharmacy technicians due to COVID-19, as pharmacy technicians are currently administering vaccinations to patients on the frontlines. As the demand for pharmacy technicians continues to increase, you will see more advanced certifications coming into play for pharmacy technicians to continue to grow in their field.

“Being a pharmacy technician is one of healthcare’s best kept secrets, because there is so much opportunity, demand, and growth happening in the industry. It is a surprisingly rewarding industry to dive into and is more than what meets the eye!” Jamie exclaims.

To learn more about WVJC Online’s exciting Pharmacy Technician program, request information here!

Clinical Medical Assistant Student
Simulates Doctor’s Office Visit

Today, you will get to experience one of the hands-on training components that Clinical Medical Assistant students complete. Clinical Medical Assistant Instructor, Carrie Friend, simulates a doctor’s office visit for Clinical Medical Assistant student, Morgan Casey, providing her the career training she will need to work in the healthcare field.

In this demonstration, you will see the Clinical Medical Assistant student obtaining “patient” vital signs. WVJC finds it important to provide students with a high level of hands-on training to prepare students to enter the workforce. If you want to get into the healthcare field and learn more about what a Clinical Medical Assistant does in their daily position, check out our Clinical Medical Assistant program here. Enjoy the demonstration!

 

 

Mountaineer Technology Consultants, LLC – Externship Highlight

Mountaineer Technology Consultants, LLC was formed in 2016 by Booker T. Walton of Morgantown, WV. MTC provides full service IT solutions for individuals, small businesses, and companies throughout the state of West Virginia. MTC offers services in consulting, hardware, networking, software, and digital marketing. MTC also offers student services such as PC diagnostics, formatting hard drives, and standard cleanup of a PC.

West Virginia Junior College began their relationship with Mountaineer Technology Consultants in 2017. MTC has attended WVJC career fairs, done mock interviews for students, hired graduates, and accepted numerous WVJC Networking Administration/Security and Information Technology students to complete their externship hours. Students completing their externship are able to experience a wide array of in field knowledge while working with businesses in the community.

Mountaineer Technology Consultants is currently hosting a Network Administration/Security student from WVJC who is completing their 90 hour externship. MTC also just brought on board a WVJC graduate for full-time employment. WVJC is honored to work with a company that cares deeply about the community and state. Students and graduates are not only able to develop their skills with hands-on training at MTC, but are also able to get a sense of pride helping those around them.

To learn more about WVJC’s exciting externship program, request information here!

Clinical Medical Assistant Program

The Clinical Medical Assistant program at West Virginia Junior College prepares students for careers in the medical field in a short term, 18-month program.  Successful medical assistants are dependable, have strong communication skills, demonstrate initiative, and are compassionate while providing patient care. WVJC medical assisting students receive hands-on training that includes taking patients’ vital signs, drawing blood, giving injections, performing and reading EKGs, assisting with medical examinations, and more!

In addition to the hands-on training students receive in the classroom, students complete a 160-hour externship. During the externship, students have the opportunity to observe and apply the skill sets they have gained in the program, in a real work setting.  Clinical Medical Assistant Program Director, Chelsea Abbott states, “Externship is an excellent opportunity for students to network with area professionals and practices the skills they’ve learned in the program.” WVJC Career Management Director, Selena Ramey states, “When students excel during the externship, it can often lead to employment opportunities.”

Graduates from the Clinical Medical Assistant program earn an associate degree and have the opportunity to sit for certification examinations through the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).  Students receive training at such a high level that they are eligible to sit for the following certifications through NHA: Medical Assistant, Phlebotomy Technician, and EKG Technician. Certifications provide employers third party proof that graduates have the knowledge to be successful in their medical careers.

If you are interested in becoming an essential employee in the healthcare field and learning more about the fast track, career-based programs at WVJC, request information here!

Michael Asbury – Graduate Highlight

Michael Asbury was a senior at Riverside High School when he learned West Virginia Junior College offers an associate degree in Information Technology. Michael always had an interest in learning about computers, specifically hardware. He scheduled a college visit to learn more about the program and during that visit, he realized WVJC was a great fit for him. Michael chose WVJC because of the short-term programs, small school environment, and hands-on training.

One of Michael’s favorite classes at WVJC was his server course. During this class, he learned how to install and manage a Microsoft server. Michael said, “Mr. Pinkerton really knows what he is talking about and always made class very interesting.”  Michael graduated from the Information Technology program at WVJC in February 2019.  He said the best part about attending WVJC is “the community feeling. The staff and classmates are all supportive and willing to help.”

Less than a month after graduating with an associate degree, Michael started a job as a technology service desk agent. His career in technology has provided him financial security, IT and customer service experience, and a job that he enjoys going to daily. Michael said, “I enjoy helping customers resolve their technology issues.”

When asked if Michael would refer a friend or family member to WVJC, he said, “Yes. WVJC is a great way to earn your education in a short amount of time and receive training for a career.” If you would like to know more about the IT field or another program at WVJC, please visit wvjc.edu for more information and apply today!

Paige Walker – Student Highlight

It takes years for some people to figure out what it is that they want to do with their lives. However, for one student, it came naturally. Paige Walker worked at Oceana Medical Center for 5 years, as a phlebotomist, but took time off to be with her two young daughters. Now that they are both in school, she decided to further her education in the medical field. Paige heard an ad on the radio about WVJC Online and decided to request some additional information. “WVJC seemed like the perfect fit for me since I could do Medical Assisting online”, she says. Paige loves being able to work at her own pace. “With two young daughters that are in school, very active in sports, and other activities; this allows me to keep a flexible schedule while still getting my degree.” Paige also loves the fact that she is able to come into campus and receive hands-on training.

Paige chose to pursue her degree in Medical Assisting because she enjoys helping people. “In my 5 years, while I was working as a phlebotomist, I knew I wanted to do more. I would always go watch the nurses give injections and take care of the patients. This program allows me to do what I love and teaches me the office side of the medical field as well.” After graduation, Paige is hoping to work at a local doctor’s office so that she can help her community as much as she can. She also has plans of furthering her education and one day becoming an RN!

“All the staff at WVJC are very helpful anytime I need them. I would like to thank everyone at WVJC for helping me take a step in the right direction for my future.” – Paige Walker

Jeffrey Byrd – Graduate Highlight


Jeffrey Byrd is a recent graduate from the Network Administration/Security Associate Degree program at West Virginia Junior College Charleston. Jeffrey decided to explore his options at WVJC due to the short length of the program, friendliness of the staff and faculty, hands-on training, and convenience of the location. Jeffrey conducted a lot of research on the job market before selecting a program.  He chose Network Administration/Security due to the growing demand for information technology professionals.

Jeffrey had nearly perfect attendance and maintained a 4.0 GPA during his time at WVJC. His dedication to his education allowed him the opportunity to be a Federal Work Study. He was a huge asset to students, staff, and faculty and was always available to assist with technology needs. This position allowed him the opportunity to apply IT skills outside of the classroom.

Before attending WVJC, Jeffrey attended traditional colleges. Jeffrey remembers taking classes that did not pertain to his major. He described his experience at the prior colleges as less personable and he felt more like a number than a person. Jeff said, “At WVJC the faculty and staff really care about my success.” Toward the end of the Network Administration/Security program, Jeffrey completed his externship at a large communications provider, Citynet. He said, “My externship provided me valuable real-world experience with people who wanted to help me learn”. When asked if Jeffrey would refer a friend to WVJC, he said, “Absolutely, I loved my experience at WVJC and the opportunity to be a Federal Work Study.”

We are excited to see all that Jeffrey accomplishes in the IT field! If you would like to know more about the Network Administration/Security program or another program at WVJC, please visit www.wvjc.edu for more information and apply today!

Pharmacy Technician Program Highlight

When students are enrolled in the Pharmacy Technician program at West Virginia Junior College, they are able to learn about all aspects of being a pharmacy technician. While enrolled in the program, students participate in hands-on training of skills in both retail and clinical settings.

In retail pharmacy, a pharmacy technician inputs new prescriptions into pharmacy software, works with insurance claims, pulls medications to be counted, counts and labels medications for orders, answer phone calls, and interacts with customers on a daily basis. WVJC has a pharmacy software program in which students are able to practice these skills! WVJC also has a pharmacy lab room which is set up as half a retail pharmacy and half a clinical pharmacy. Students have the opportunity to physically count tablets and package them for sale, just like they would in an actual retail pharmacy setting.

Clinical pharmacy is a sector of pharmacy that a lot of students do not think about. Clinical pharmacy can include compounding IV bags, making capsules, mixing ointments, and reconstituting medications. A unique feature of WVJC is that our pharmacy labs have flow hoods. This is the area where IV medications, including chemotherapy drugs, are mixed. During lab courses, students mix medications in the flow hoods.

WVJC’s Pharmacy Technician program is not only unique because of the hands-on training students experience, but also because the program is recognized by the PTCB. The PTCB is the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board. They regulate and administer certifications to pharmacy technicians. Upon completion of the program at WVJC, students sit for this certification exam. Having this certification is very appealing to employers, as is proves to them that you have the skills necessary to perform your job.

Pharmacy technicians have several options when it comes to career choices. There are retail pharmacies such as CVS, Walgreens, and Wal-Mart, and there are also independent pharmacies. On the clinical side of pharmacy, there are inpatient pharmacies in hospitals and nursing homes. Technicians are even needed in correctional facilities and mental health clinics. The possibilities for pharmacy technicians is ever-growing, and the roles they take on are always expanding. Pharmacy technicians have to be able to multi-task, dependable, self-sufficient, and responsible. If a pharmacy tech is working in a retail setting, they need to be personable and patient when interacting with patients. These are all important characteristics employers will look for during the hiring process.

Students complete an externship of 165 hours during their program at WVJC. The externship allows students to go out and work in nearby businesses to get real-life experience in their field of study. WVJC has had students complete externships at small independent pharmacies and in hospital settings. The externship is an important part of the students’ education because it provides them with an opportunity to see which pharmacy career suits them the best. Some students divide their externship and do half in a retail setting and the other half in a hospital setting. Another perk that comes along with externships is that sometimes they lead to careers!

Over the next 5-10 years, schooling for pharmacy technicians is going to become very important. In 2020, anyone who wants to sit for the certification exam through PTCB will be required to go through a training program. This is a positive advancement in the field of pharmacy. Technicians will now be required to have knowledge of pharmacy and the medications they are interacting with every day. Pharmacy is an ever-changing and developing field and the demand for pharmacy technicians will only grow over the next 5-10 years.

Becoming a pharmacy technician is a very rewarding career! As a technician, you are constantly learning about medications, such as how they work in the body and what they are used for. Helping someone get the medication they need and knowing you made a difference in their life, even if it is a small difference, makes being a pharmacy technician very rewarding!