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!

How to Triage a Patient

Check out our VLOG on why WVJC students decided to further their education. Our students learn hands-on skills to become ready for their careers in healthcare, business, and information technology! In this video medical assisting students demonstrate how to properly triage a patient.  To learn more about WVJC fast-track programs, visit wvjc.edu today!

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!

Jennifer Bird – Staff Highlight

When you walk through the doors at West Virginia Junior College in Cross Lanes, you can always expect a welcoming greeting from the administrative assistant, Jennifer Bird. In 1998, Jennifer graduated from WVJC and earned a diploma in Clerical Word Processing. Jennifer loved her caring instructors and hands-on educational experience. Shortly after graduation, she was contacted about an employment opportunity at WVJC, and she knew it would be a great fit!

Jennifer heard about college classes at WVJC in 1998 from her grandma. She said, “I remember my grandma finding an advertisement in the newspaper for classes at West Virginia Junior College. I made a phone call and completed the admissions process and started classes the next month.”

Jennifer wears many hats as WVJC’s Administrative Assistant. She offers support to students, graduates, staff, and faculty. She said, “I believe in the mission of WVJC and the best part is seeing students graduate and fulfill their dreams.” Jennifer is currently enrolled in the Business Administration degree program through WVJC Online. “I am enjoying my Introduction to Business course and my favorite part is learning how to start a business,” she says.

Jennifer enjoys spending time with her family in her spare time, working on her farm with her many animals, and horseback riding. A fun fact about Jennifer is she has 10 children, 20 dogs, 25 cows, 3 horses, 8 chickens, and 2 cats and she still greets everyone with a smile when they enter WVJC.

To learn more about WVJC, request information here!

Omni Strategic Technologies – Externship Highlight

West Virginia Junior College and Omni Strategic Technologies have built a valuable and vital partnership to assist students in preparing for their careers in the technology field! Over the past several years, Omni has been accepting students from the Network Administration/Security program for their hands-on externship experience. Additionally, graduates have been hired by Omni into full-time employment.

Omni Strategic Technologies was founded in 1986 as HGO Technology. Omni is a full-service information technology firm, offering a wide range of technology services to clients. They have a particular focus on advisory services, consulting with businesses to choose the best technology products and services to meet their needs, and solve the challenges they are facing. Omni’s services have proven particularly valuable to companies during the COVID-19 pandemic, as many employers look to adapt the ways in which they conduct business. According to Steve Kay, Regional Director, Omni continues to see an upward trend in sales, even during the pandemic.

WVJC’s students who complete their externship with Omni have the opportunity to go hands-on with a wide variety of experiences in the information technology field. From helping to configure and deploy new systems, to learning about management of customers’ advanced servers and networks, students see the real-world application of many of the things they have experienced in the classroom. The information technology field offers many opportunities for growth, and the externship experience with Omni helps prepare students for that growth. As Mr. Kay observed, “A lot of the technology field is about growing people from technician to engineer to advisor.”

Both West Virginia Junior College and Omni Strategic Technologies are committed to continuing this partnership well into the future. Omni is a valuable part of Charleston and West Virginia and continues to offer companies important services, even during difficult times. As Mr. Kay observed, the technology field is ever-changing, but the one thing that is certain is that every company will continue to have technology needs and there will be a lot of potential for graduates in the field.

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

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!

Study Tips: How to Overcome Test Anxiety

We know that preparing for a test can be, at times, overwhelming and a little stressful. Being prepared can really help you overcome the anxiety that often comes with taking a test. Read on as we provide a few study tips!

1. Create Pre-Tests

  • Matching
  • Fill in blanks
  • Essay/short answer
    • (For in-class short answer and essay questions consider having a blank sheet of scrap paper to jot down ideas before organizing your final answers on the test.)

2. Over Prepare

  • Go above and beyond what you think is necessary to prepare for a test.
  • Write, re-write and write again.
  • Review your notes out loud.

3. Apply a key word in the definition to the term (instead of trying to remember the entire definition)

  • Make connections that make sense to you.
    • For example:  Introspection – the act or process of looking into oneself.
    • introspection + oneself (Now on the test when you are to define or match the term introspection you will remember it has to do with oneself.)

Kali McGuire – Student Highlight

Kali is enrolled in the Dental Assisting program at West Virginia Junior College Charleston.  She decided Dental Assisting was the best fit for her because she has always been interested in teeth and oral surgeries. She also likes that dental offices typically have family-friendly hours.

“I chose WVJC because I was able to get on a fast track to an Associate Degree in Dental Assisting. This was a degree I can use and be able to spend time with my family. My favorite part of going to school here is the friendliness of literally everyone, especially Kellie.”

Kali says her idea of the perfect day would be organizing! “I enjoy organizing, so my perfect day would be totally organizing. I would also hang out with my daughter, Paisley, go to the park, read a little and eat some good food.”

Her goals are to be working with a Dental surgeon and growing her fami

Meet WVJC Financial Aid Representative, Paula Sullivan!


Hi! My name is Paula Sullivan. I attended Herbert Hoover High School and graduated in 1998. I then attended Marshall University for roughly 1 ½ yrs. Prior to working at West Virginia Junior College, I worked for Frontier Communications, Verizon, and Bell Atlantic for 17 yrs. I am now the Financial Aid Representative at WVJC. I was looking to finish up my degree and find a career that would allow me to care for my 8 year old daughter. WVJC worked for me!

I love my friendly, hardworking co-workers, and chatting with our students. I started out at WVJC as an administrative assistant and then moved up to Financial Aid. I am definitely motivated by learning new things! I am most proud of my 8-year-old baby girl Chloe. My long term career goals are to gain my Associate Degree in Business Administration and Accounting, and to work my way up at WVJC. An interesting fact about myself that not many know is I once skydived. It was AWESOME!