Summer Parsons – Student Highlight

Legal Office Assisting student Summer Parsons has been attending WVJC since May 2020. Prior to starting college and after high school, Summer took a year off. She said she was feeling “stuck” in Morgantown and was beginning work as a server. She decided that it was time for her to make a change and followed her heart to begin her career in the legal field!

When deciding where she would attend college, Summer knew that she was not ready to begin a 4-year degree. She wanted something a little faster that would still allow her to obtain a good career. At the time, she was not completely sure what she wanted to do in the legal field, and she also did not want to spend all of the money that a 4-year college costs if she was not sure of her path. With this being said, she knew she was interested in the legal field because she was always involved in politics and wanted to advocate for others. Summer wants to make a difference, and she knows this program will allow her to do so!

During Summer’s time at WVJC, she has made some amazing connections with her instructors. In particular, she said, “Bryce (Adkins) and Dustin (Blankenship) would have to be my favorites. They have helped me with so much.” She said that they both helped her academically and with personal issues, going above and beyond what she expected.

After graduation, Summer plans to go on and get her bachelor’s degree in public policy. She hopes this will allow her more opportunities to work in either criminal defense law or family law. This decision is based on her desire to help others and be their voice when they do not have one. The passion Summer has for the legal field is shown through her work and her goals! She is also hoping to pursue higher education somewhere warmer. Her family is from Florida, so that may be the place calling her name! In conclusion, Summer emphasized multiple times how she loves going to WVJC and tells all of her friends that are struggling with finding what they want to do or who need a good support system to come to WVJC!

To learn more about WVJC’s short-term programs, request information here!

Brittany Remington – Staff Highlight

“I took this position because I come from a background of encouraging people to reach their full potential. One of my personal goals is to help others overcome challenges. In the position of Director of Career Management, I am able to help students succeed and reach their goals.” – Brittany Remington

As the Director of Career Management at West Virginia Junior College, Brittany Remington assists WVJC students and graduates with employment opportunities. Her role is to develop long-lasting partnerships in our local community while still serving WVJC students. Brittany instructs a Career Preparation course at the end of each student’s program where she assists them in resume building, interview skills, submitting job applications, and continuing to work on their professional communication skills.

When asked what motivates her, she had this to say. “What motivates me is going through the journey with my students and seeing them reach their goal of obtaining their dream careers.”

Prior to working at WVJC, Brittany worked in mental health as a Team Lead Therapist for a school-based partial hospitalization program. She worked closely with high school students to improve their social skills and develop their personal relationships. This path led her to WVJC as a means to work in an environment that would allow her to assist students and graduates in higher education to develop professional relationships. Brittany enjoys the element of career management that allows her to work with local employers and be a liaison between student or graduate and employer.

When asked what her favorite part about working at WVJC is, Brittany said, “Every day is different here! I love the ability to work with such a broad and diverse group of students, graduates, and employers. I like the fact that I am given the opportunity to wear many different hats in my position. On any given day, I can be found working with students, graduates, employers, and leaders in the community. When I am not working with the aforementioned groups of people, you can find me working with faculty and staff developing strategies to provide high-level services for our students and graduates.”

If you’re interested in learning more about the career services that WVJC offers students and graduates, request information here!

Michele Crespo – Student Highlight

Becoming a student is a major event in one’s life, regardless of what stage of life that person may be in. Whether a person is a first-time college student or a seasoned higher education veteran, starting a new school has the possibility to be an exhilarating experience. Many students experience negative events during their first attempt at higher education, which may steer them away from pursuing college ever again. Some students take this adversity and use it to fuel their drive for success. Michele Crespo is one fantastic example of the latter type of student.

Michele graduated high school in 2007, where she, much like many high school students, had a big decision to make about the rest of her life. “Right after I graduated high school in 2007, I was made to choose some type of schooling for myself. Because my grades in high school were never very good, my parents strongly encouraged me to attend a trade school instead of any type of campus atmosphere school. After ending up choosing to go to a cosmetology program, I was not truly passionate about the field of study that I had chosen.”

Facing a new life and planning for the future with her growing family in mind, Michele set out to restart her college career. A new concern that Michele had not expected to encounter was also making headlines across the world – the COVID-19 pandemic. Michele was not sure where to begin the process, especially with the pandemic raging. “After the pandemic started and my son’s school closed down, I had to make a decision.” Michele details that WVJC stood out to her in a sea of many colleges. “…the one that really stood out to me was WJVC, just for the fact that when I was doing all of my research for any information, it was right there and answered all the questions I had. When I requested more information, I was contacted by some of the kindest and most encouraging people I had ever met in my life.  Even though I was terrified to take this next step in my life and my biggest obstacle was getting out of my own head and just taking the leap, it was when I spoke to Dasia with her kind and encouraging attitude and words that made me know this was the school I wanted to attend.”

Michele is now enrolled in WVJC’s Clinical Medical Assistant program. During her admissions process, Michele maintained how she wanted to help others. “I chose my program because I very much dislike going to the doctors, just like most do. My favorite part of attending this school is the access to help anytime I need it. Being 32 and back in school is difficult enough, but with the advances with computers since I have been in school, you now have to learn that, as well. The amazing tech support center and teachers are available as often as I need them. This helps me to know I can get my work done and make sure it is done correctly.”

After graduation, Michele has a goal to become that bright positivity that one feels when they walk into a medical visit. “My ideal job after graduation is to work at a pediatrician’s office so that I can make the children that come into that office look forward to coming back and not dread it. Being a mom, I know what it is like when your child has a bad experience at a doctor’s office, so I want to hopefully make sure that won’t happen wherever I work. I would like to be working in a doctor’s office of some type, with benefits, and hopefully have some kind of retirement set up for myself and my husband.”

We are overjoyed to see Michele’s progression, as well as her growth as she moves toward her goals in life! If your story sounds similar to Michele’s or you would like to know more about WVJC’s Clinical Medical Assistant program, request information here!

Kendall Craig – Staff Highlight

Kendall is the high school admissions advisor at WVJC Morgantown. She chose to work at WVJC because she genuinely believes that higher education can change lives for the better. Her favorite part of working at WVJC is helping students realize their full potential, especially by helping them enroll in college. Kendall says, “It is an amazing feeling to know that you have helped a student realize that they can go to college and be able to achieve their goals.”

Kendall graduated with her B.A. in Environmental Studies with a minor in Education from the University of California Santa Cruz in 2013. Since then, she has worked in the aquaculture industry on an abalone farm, has been the Sustainability Coordinator at Santa Barbara City College, and has been an Environmental Educator for the non-profit Explore Ecology. Kendall also has her California real estate license.

Throughout her life, Kendall’s mother has motivated her to be resilient, even during hard times. Kendall says, “I have been fortunate to have an amazing champion in my life who always pushes me to be a better person.” That motivation and guidance was important to Kendall.  She says that, for her, graduating from college is one of her proudest accomplishments. “There are no words to describe the feeling one gets from years of hard work coming to fruition.”

Long term, Kendall would like to continue to work in the field of education. She would love to be able to teach at the collegiate level someday.

One thing about Kendall that many may not know, is that she did not grow up in West Virginia. Kendall grew up in Santa Barbara, CA, and has always loved the ocean. She enjoys free diving and snorkeling in the underwater world. One of Kendall’s passions is to travel. Internationally she has been to the Bahamas, Costa Rica, Indonesia, Italy, and Mexico. She has traveled in the United States to Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Kentucky, Illinois, Maryland, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and of course, West Virginia.