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!
We took a trip down to our newest externship site, CPR Cell Phone Repair, located in the Suncrest Town Centre in Morgantown! Immediately upon walking into the doors, you feel welcomed by the manager, Matt Bowen.
Matt informed us that CPR Cell Phone Repair has an interesting history as they were once better known as Fanelli Boys. Fanelli Boys has been repairing electronic devices since 1997, when their first shop opened in Orlando, Florida, and has been expanding ever since. It has only been 4 years that CPR Cell Phone Repair has been using their new name but remains associated with Fanelli Boys. CPR Cell Phone Repair has kept up with the Fanelli Boys standards as they quickly diagnose and fix electronic devices.
WVJC students have a lot to learn from this well-established franchise as they learn how to troubleshoot and diagnose electronic devices such as cellphones, tablets, computers, and laptops. Their externship experience at CPR Cell Phone Repair allows students to get an understanding of how to troubleshoot not only hardware issues but also software issues. Students get the hands-on experience they need to increase their technical knowledge and increase their problem-solving abilities. Another exciting experience for students is shadowing excellent customer service techniques delivered by the CPR technicians. Therefore, our students who extern at CPR Cell Phone Repair will get the technological experience they are looking for and learn techniques for professionally interacting with customers.
WVJC students are not the only ones benefitting from this partnership. Matt expressed that it has been beneficial to have WVJC students as externs because they bring fresh eyes and new ideas. Matt and his team also shared that they genuinely enjoy teaching these skills to students. This experience for both parties opens up the opportunity for permanent employment if students show a dedication to learning and a strong work ethic.
To learn more about WVJC’s exciting externship program, request information here!
West Virginia Junior College offers many great experiences to help you start your career. From the instruction specific to your program, to the exceptionally dedicated staff and faculty, our staff does everything they can to help our students be successful. Additionally, all enrolled students participate in an externship that is specific to their program. Whether you are a residential or online student, an externship will be completed. These externships provide hands-on experience for our students in the field they will be working in.
The dedicated range of hours necessary to complete your externship is 90 or 160 hours. These hours are completed in a 12-week time span. WVJC has developed many relationships with reputable businesses in and around our student’s location of residency to assist with making their externship term go as smoothly as possible.
Being given the opportunity to work with a location site for your externship hours is beneficial in more than one way. This opportunity should be added to a professional resume, giving employers the opportunity to see hands-on experiences gained to partner with your education. Many WVJC students are offered employment opportunities from the locations at which they complete their externship.
WVJC strives for student success and promotes the valuable experiences that students are able to achieve within their externships.
To learn more about WVJC’s externship program, request information here!
Jacob Rae is a student in the Network Administration/Security program at WVJC Morgantown. He was always into technology as a kid and liked to take things apart to learn how they worked. As he grew up, he decided to look for potential career opportunities that would allow him to work in the field. He has looked into cybersecurity and programming and feels that the foundation that he’s getting in the NA/S program is a necessary step in his career path.
Jacob is originally from Michigan and moved to Pennsylvania after graduating from high school. He attended a local community college in PA, but it was not the right fit for him. In talking with a friend, they recommended WVU or WVJC. He chose WVJC because of the fast-track program and smaller class sizes. He prefers the fast-track program because most of his classes are preparing him for a career in his field. Jacob appreciates the extra time that his teachers take to answer his questions. He said, “You can tell they (the faculty) care about the students and their classes by the time and detail they put into the lesson plans.”
His favorite part about being a student at WVJC is all the people he gets to meet and the diversity of students in his classes. He attends class with young people like himself. However, he also has classes with those starting new careers later in life, as well as those who have been in the field and want to further their career. His favorite class has been Student Success Strategies, taught by Director of Career Management, Samantha Esposito. Samantha has since moved into a new role at the campus as Campus President. He said, “Sam made sure everyone was involved in the class and participated!”
After graduation, Jacob would like to work in an environment with a large IT infrastructure. He used the example of a local hospital. After getting some experience in the technology field, he will decide if he wants to pursue further education. In five years, Jacob wants to be working in his field.
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!
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.
“I was three years into a teaching degree and decided I wanted to be a nurse. I moved to Morgantown and started applying to programs.”- Tierra Justice
The path to college and a career can have its twist and turns. Sometimes a student can enter into one field of study and find a more appealing path along the way. Tierra Justice certainly found herself along that path prior to coming to WVJC. Not only did she seek a path to the nursing field, but she also moved from the southern part of WV to Morgantown in the process.
Once she started looking into WVJC’s Nursing program, Tierra knew it was for her. “Unlike most nursing programs, our program is set up into 6-week terms instead of full semesters. It allows us to focus more on the individual classes and graduate quicker,” she said. Tierra also noted that the admissions process was really simple along the way.
As a student in WVJC’s Nursing program, Tierra has really found a home. She says that Joanne Kozich was her favorite instructor. “She is always ready to go to bat for us when we have concerns. She goes out of her way to make sure we understand the material and makes herself available for questions. I’m the president of my cohort and she has been the biggest help with fundraising and pinning planning as well.” In addition to classroom instruction, Tierra says that her clinical instructors have really made a mark on her education as well. “The factors that stand out most are the small class sizes, instructors, and clinical experiences.”
West Virginia Junior College has always been an institution that looks to serve the community in any way possible. With COVID-19 and all the disruption it has caused, the faculty and staff knew they had to step up. At the WVJC Charleston campus, we provided meals for healthcare workers on an entire floor at CAMC. At the WVJC Morgantown campus, we collaborated with a local restaurant in Morgantown, WV to supply food for children who were not receiving school lunches due to the pandemic. The Career Management Department also provided information to current students who have children who need to seek meal assistance.
Shortly after the stay at home orders were in place and students were learning in a solely virtual capacity, career management started the “WVJC Strong” campaign. Stickers were mailed to students with a letter of encouragement to let them know we stand united as an academic family and we are in this together. The academic team took pictures of their remote workstations with the logo from the campaign and Ryan Langley, Director of Instructional Design and Technology, created a video to share on social media.
The West Virginia Junior College Career Management Department continues to reach out to employers and build relationships to secure employment for current students and graduates. “Though this pandemic has changed the way we operate to an extent, we are still providing the same level of service to the students/graduates, and the same partnerships to employers in the community that we have always been recognized for,” says Samantha Esposito, Director of Career Management. As things are ever-changing with COVID-19, WVJC continues to adapt rapidly in whichever ways necessary.
To learn more about WVJC Online and its services to help support students, request information here!
One of the most important and fleeting moments in a person’s life is their senior year of high school. The year often begins with experiencing all of the last moments of your childhood. This includes the last first day of school pics for your parent’s Facebook page, the last football game, the last time most will play organized sports or performances, the last school dances, and on and on. These events are so significant that experiencing them while also preparing for your life after high school can be daunting. So, while you are experiencing all of these special moments, WVJC wants to provide you with some ways to make sure that you ARE prepared to leave high school.
The first decisions that you need to make actually should begin BEFORE those last-firsts start. Most people have an idea about how they want their life to be after high school. For some, they will go to work, for others the military, but for so many, the question will be which college you want to attend, the program that you want to study, etc. In short, the people in your life begin to start asking you what you will do next in your life. Assuming that college is on your list, here are a few things that you can do as a junior (and early in your senior year), to get started.
Narrow your course of study.
Most people think that they need to visit colleges first. The people around you will have plenty of thoughts on the school you should attend and the reasons that one college is better than another. However, you have to make your best decision for your life. WVJC actually encourages high school students to focus on a career field, course of study, or the type of career that they want to have. These factors and decisions will naturally narrow the colleges that you should spend time on.
Now start checking on colleges.
Not all colleges offer all programs of study, and some are known for having really great programs in certain fields. Therefore, by narrowing your options, you know that you are focusing on the best colleges or universities for that field of study. Once you have found few that make sense based upon your preferences and field of study, go tour them! Most high schools offer students time to go visit the colleges that they consider. Take advantage of this!
Visit the colleges that you are considering.
Once you have narrowed your school choices to a few, go visit them. So many times, a student gets an idea in their head of what a college experience should look/feel like. Seeing them first hand will actually give you a better sense of fit. AT WVJC, we require prospective students to visit our campus prior to application to make sure that what you think you want and what a college offers coincide.
Apply to the colleges/universities that make sense after completing Steps 1-3.
Apply for the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).
Regardless of the colleges and universities that you have applied to or want to apply to, this is a necessary step. Make sure that you seek out guidance from the colleges that you are considering if you need help with this process. At WVJC, you actually get one-on-one time with a financial aid representative to assist you with road bumps.
This is the most common pitfall for a high school senior. Finding time to apply for scholarships can be difficult, but is absolutely necessary. Check the college and university scholarships that are available, go to your school counselor’s office, and check on the local and community scholarships that exist. The high school guidance department can also assist you with college and university scholarships. Finally, turn to the internet to find scholarships specific to you. There are a ton of services out there that can help you track down scholarships. Remember, scholarships are money that you do not have to repay as you would a student loan, so find as many as you can.
Stay in contact with the college/university that you are considering.
Don’t miss out! Make sure to meet all deadlines and requirements for scholarships, fees, housing, etc. At WVJC, our admissions and financial aid representatives will assist you in meeting all the required deadlines.
Spend time preparing for a different environment.
College is not high school. The expectations are different, accountability can be different, and figuring out a plan to tackle it is critical to your success.
We hope that this information will help you navigate your senior year. If you would like more information on WVJC, click here!
“I think that WVJC is a great program because the schedule accommodates students like myself, a mom, or others who have to work and raise a family. The classes are small, the instructors are great, and the terms are only 6 weeks. It is very fast-paced, but it’s doable if you try your best!”
One thing about many of the students at WVJC is that they are often not just students. Most work and have families in addition to attending school. When you add in the fact that Lindsay Maxwell is in WVJC’s Nursing program, that adds an extra layer of difficulty to the equation.
Lindsay’s path to WVJC started in 2019. She was looking to continue her education in the healthcare field while working as a scribe at a local hospital. Working in this environment allowed her to see, first-hand, the work and care that a nurse provides in an emergency department. “I heard about WVJC and decided to apply after a coworker of mine started the Nursing program! It was appealing to me that this program was only 18 months, and it was based in the evenings! This worked the best with my schedule.”
Knowing that she wanted to further her education, and finding a program that fit her needs, she started the application process for the WVJC Nursing program. Lindsay had post-secondary education experience, holding a bachelor’s degree in biology and an EMT certification through a local college. She is also the mom of a 3-year-old and engaged to be married. Therefore, finding a program that was short-term was important to her. “I chose the Nursing program because it was the fastest route to graduate compared to other nursing programs in the area.”
After successful completion of the application process and receiving acceptance into the program, Lindsay started school at WVJC. Her first impression was a positive one. Maxwell said, “Our classes are small, and full of non-traditional students like myself. I have made some great friendships during this. It’s nice to have other moms in the class that I can relate to while going through this program as well!”
WVJC prides itself on a family atmosphere and a WE CARE approach to education. One instructor has had a big impact on Lindsay’s success at WVJC. “I would have to say my favorite teacher is Joanne Kozich! My favorite classes so far have been OB and Pediatrics, both of which Joanne taught! She is very knowledgeable and well-rounded as a nurse and instructor! Joanne is genuine, and I feel that she truly cares about all of us and our success!”
It is no surprise that Lindsay enjoyed the Obstetrics and Pediatric courses in the Nursing program. She was very moved by the Nurses that were involved during the birth of her daughter, and she ultimately hopes to work in that environment after graduation at a local hospital. She also hopes that her new career allows her and her husband to raise their family on or near a lake.
Lindsay Maxwell is a healthcare worker, a mom, a wife, and a nursing student in an accelerated nursing program. Lindsay works tirelessly to be successful in all phases of her life and the faculty and staff at WVJC cannot wait to see her success pay off and become a member of the WVJC family of graduates.