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!

Lindsey Thomas – Student Highlight

Lindsey Thomas is a WVJC student in our online Clinical Medical Assistant program and is a CNA at a local hospital. After hearing WVJC’s commercial on the radio, she decided to go online and request more information.

After a few phone conversations with an admissions advisor, Lindsey made her decision. “I remember thinking, wow, these people are truly on my side. They want me to succeed. They’ll push me to do my best, and they’ll let me know how to do better if I’m not.”

Lindsey’s college experience wasn’t always this way. Before attending WVJC, Lindsey was a student at another institution. She felt the class sizes were too big, and she wasn’t getting the help she needed from instructors, which led Lindsey to feel overwhelmed. Now, with attending WVJC Online, Lindsey is able to have the flexibility she needs to further her education while still spending time with family and working full-time.

Lindsey chose to enroll in the Clinical Medical Assistant program because she feels it will allow her to broaden her skills in the healthcare field. The program’s credentials will allow her to enjoy the best of both worlds between administrative tasks and direct patient care.

Lindsey’s favorite class so far has been Psychology. She has always been fascinated by the human mind, and she loves being able to understand different behaviors and developments.

A perfect day for Lindsey would involve spending the day with her family and indulging in her favorite junk food – potato chips.

After graduating, Lindsey’s ideal position would be working in a doctor’s office or specialty practice, such as gynecology and obstetrics or pediatrics. If you’re interested in getting more information about WVJC’s fast-track online Clinical Medical Assistant program or any other program, request information here!

Thankful For Our WVJC Charleston Students

WVJC offers short-term, career-focused programs in Nursing, Clinical Medical Assistant, Dental Assisting, Medical Billing and Coding, Business Administration, and Network Administration/Security. At WVJC, our purpose is to empower change by creating opportunity. We believe in a WE CARE approach to helping students succeed in their education.

This Thanksgiving, our staff and faculty would like to share what we are most thankful for at WVJC, our students!

    • Michelle Miles, WVJC Campus President said, “I am so grateful for our students. I have the pleasure of interacting with students daily and I love witnessing their growth and seeing their accomplishments. Students, thank you for allowing me to be a part of your lives!”
    • Katie Harvey, WVJC Academic Dean said, “As an educator, I am thankful that our students allow us to become part of their extended families. We can experience their joys and offer support when they experience sorrows. I am thankful I can watch the growth of the student from the time they first step foot in the building to seeing them walk across the graduation stage. There is nothing like witnessing a former WVJC student find success in their career field as well as life itself!”
    • Selena Ramey, WVJC Career Management Director said, “I am thankful for students who apply themselves and overcome obstacles to be successful in their careers.”
    • Stephanie Duncan, WVJC High School Admissions Advisor said, “I am thankful for our students because they allow us to see real growth every day. Every student is different, but watching them during their journey from WVJC student to graduate is something I will always hold near and dear to my heart.”
    • Kellie Moore, WVJC Admissions Manager said, “I’m thankful for our students because they bring me so much joy and happiness! I love seeing them accomplish their goals and transition into careers!”
    • Sheena Pack, WVJC High School Admissions Advisor said, “I am thankful for the relationships I have with our students. I love witnessing their success and look forward to seeing them when I come to work.”
    • Christina Hayslett, WVJC Financial Aid Representative said, “I am thankful for our students because they remind us every day is a new opportunity to start, to grow, and to succeed.”
    • Chelsea Abbott, WVJC Medical Director said, “I am so thankful for my students. I am passionate about teaching them the skills they need for the medical field and watching them apply those skills in their careers.”
    • Renee Rollins, WVJC Dental Assisting Program Director said, “I am thankful for my students who make me laugh in class and bring joy to not just me, but their fellow students.”
    • Aaron Settle, WVJC Adjunct Instructor said, “Interactions with my students allow me to learn from them daily, just as I hope they are learning from me!”
    • Kisha James, WVJC Nursing Instructor said, “I am thankful for our students because they remind me that we still have a striving generation in our future. All programs offered at WVJC are to better not only those coming out of high school but also adults in higher education. All of our students have a drive and determination and every day they make me feel like a proud momma.”
    • Jonathan Lucas-Neel, WVJC Nursing Instructor said, “Teaching nursing at WVJC over the past year has brought me so many joys. I am thankful for the excitement that comes when students get to practice a new skill for the first time, to be present when they make a difference in the life of a patient, or even to see the satisfaction when they do well on an exam that I know they struggled to master. Working with nursing students has taught me to be a better nurse. It has made me evaluate the ‘why’ of the care we provide. I am enthusiastic to start our second cohort here at WVJC and thankful to have the opportunity to help train the next generation of nurses to care for our community.”
  • Jennifer Bird, WVJC Administrative Assistant said, “This year has been so hard on everyone and I wanted to share some of the reasons why I am thankful for our students. I am thankful every day I get to see our students walk in the door, even with their masks on, I can see that they are smiling and happy to be coming in for class. I am thankful to be able to watch our students achieve their goals to graduate and provide a better life for themselves and their families. It is simply amazing to see them overcome obstacles to graduate; one of my favorite quotes is “So often you find that the students you’re trying to inspire are the ones that end up inspiring you.”
  • Holly Mitchell, WVJC Adjunct Instructor said, “I am thankful for our students for overcoming a myriad of challenges and remaining relentless on their pursuit to succeed! They are truly inspiring and I’m blessed to be a part of their journey at WVJC!”
  • Kelly Pauley, WVJC Nursing Director said, “I am thankful for my nursing students because they are so eager to learn, so driven to accomplish their dreams, and so compassionate.  They teach me every day why I love what I do.”
  • Mark Light, WVJC Adjunct Instructor said, “I’m thankful for my students because they challenge me.  When I started at WVJC, I was worried that I would not be able to relate to my students’. One of the things we had in common was that we all spoke Appalachian American.  (If you need to know what that is just ask one of my students).  I was able to present the information to them in a way that was easy for them to understand and there is nothing more rewarding as an instructor than to see the lights go on in their students eyes that let you know they understand and comprehend what you are teaching them.”
  • Hydiah White, WVJC Adjunct Instructor said, “I am thankful for our students because they are always helping me to become a better teacher. Everyone has a different learning style and I enjoy finding creative ways to explain the material. It can be challenging, but it is worth it!”

If you are ready to earn your education in a fast track, hands-on, career-focused program at a college with staff and faculty that cares about your success, request information here!

Angela Sharp – Student Highlight

Angela Sharp earned her Associate Degree in Medical Assisting from WVJC Charleston in 2017.  Angela decided to attend WVJC after she graduated from high school. She chose WVJC because of the convenience of being close to home and the small college environment. The flexible schedule allowed her to work while earning her degree. Angela said, “The staff is always friendly and the instructors actually care if we succeed.”

In 2019, Angela was accepted into the Specialized Associate Degree in Nursing program at WVJC.  She said, “I always wanted to be a Registered Nurse and the Associate Degree in Medical Assisting at WVJC was a great stepping stone to helping me achieve my goal.” We asked Angela what her favorite part is about attending WVJC and she said, “I love how small the classes are because I get to know everyone on a personal level. Even when we are stressed, the instructors and staff always make me feel better and encourage me.”

One of her best memories while enrolled in the Clinical Medical Assistant program at WVJC were group lunches in the student lounge. In addition to learning, WVJC encourages students to get involved with clubs. Student club members often host lunches in the lounge to raise money for non-profit organizations and student events. This extracurricular activity is a great way to meet other students, be involved with WVJC, and receive volunteer hours.

Angela’s ideal job after graduation is to work as a Registered Nurse in a hospital. She is interested in specializing in cardiology or becoming a travel nurse. If you are interested in taking the next steps to get into a medical career, request information here!

Professionalism – Part 1

Professionalism is a key component to being successful in any work environment, but what exactly is it? In a nutshell, professionalism involves traits such as competence, reliability, honesty, integrity, respectfulness, compartmentalization, and positivity. Let’s break these traits down and evaluate what they mean in a professional capacity.

What does it mean to be competent in the workplace? Employers want to know that you will provide quality work, no matter the difficulty of the workload, and that you will work to gain skills and knowledge that will help you excel in your specific work environment. It is more than being competent in your area of expertise, but also your willingness to embrace new tasks, and take the steps necessary to accomplish them. Most importantly, it’s always providing a quality product or service that will benefit your workplace overall.

Equally as important is reliability. Employers want to know that you will complete tasks by the provided deadline, or in a timely manner.  Your employer has to be able to trust you. It is not easy for employers to delegate work and trust that it will get done efficiently and effectively. Any employee who shows that they are reliable and trustworthy will be seen as more professional.

Honesty, integrity, and respect are key in putting your best professional foot forward. You are your words. Make sure to honor them. In the workplace, you should always work to keep your values in line with your words and actions, and make sure you are presenting yourself in the best way possible. The more straightforward you are, the more professional you will seem. However, it is possible to be honest and straightforward in a respectful manner. Balancing your values, thoughts, and opinions with the respect you should have for your superiors is often difficult, but vital in maintaining professionalism in the workplace.

So now that we’ve discussed some ways as to what it means to be professional in the workplace, how do you attain these skills? WVJC is here to help! At WVJC, students learn their chosen craft, while simultaneously learning how to be professional. In every course our students take, we work on basic skills that prime the students to be professional employees. As if this isn’t enough, we also offer an entire course dedicated to teaching students exclusively about professionalism before they complete their program and enter the workforce. If you’re looking for an institute that will prepare you to enter the workforce in every capacity, WVJC is the place for you!

Nicole Jones – Student Highlight

Nicole Jones is enrolled in the Clinical Medical Assistant program at WVJC Charleston. She decided to come here when she learned about the 18-month Associate Degree program. She said, “It was so close to my home and Kellie really sold me on the school. I just love her. She’s so sweet!” Nicole chose her program because she loved the clinical aspect of the medical field.

“My favorite part about attending WVJC is meeting new people, getting an education, and doing something that’s for me, not for everyone else.” She said it would be hard to pick a favorite teacher because she has liked all of her classes.

Nicole said her ideal job after graduation is to be a Medical Assistant at an OBGYN office and hopefully someday, be an office manager.

Jenny Verbonitz – Graduate Highlight


Jenny Verbonitz, who graduated from West Virginia Junior College in 2017, has always been interested in the business field. In fact, she started her business career managing the Sabraton Station.  It is her love of business that lead Jenny to expanding her education. She first attended Pierpont in 2013, which she found to be a bigger school that made her feel like a number… not a name. This style of education wasn’t for her, so she withdrew and put her education on hold. That is, until Jenny was accepted into WVJC’s Business Administration Program in 2016 after she came in for an interview with our campus representative, Matt Hahn. She said she had no intention of going to school, but Matt was really fun and she liked everything she heard, so she decided to enroll. She was accepted into our Business Administration Program and then had the opportunity to convert into a dual degree taking courses in the Legal Office Assistant Program as well. It was through her hard work and dedication that Jenny graduated from both programs, earning  associate degrees in Business Administration and Legal Office Assisting.

Jenny enjoyed her experiences at WVJC and the hours were flexible enough to fit around her schedule. She especially loved having Fridays off. During her time attending WVJC, Jenny had many different business classes and instructors, but a few instructors stuck out to her. She loved getting to be in class with Bryce Adkins. He took their legal class on tours to the WVU law school, which allowed her to see the legal process and put things into perspective for her.  “It was really neat to see that kind of environment”, she says. Another teacher who stuck out for Jenny was Rick Frank, who taught her business classes. Both instructors communicated with the students on a personal level.

After graduation, Jenny was hired at an insurance agency and is now prepping to take her accident and health licensure exam. She now gets to apply the skills she learned in her business and legal classes by working in sales with home and auto insurance.  The experience Jenny received with the LexisNexis certification training during her Legal Office Assisting program allows her to perform her job duties at a more proficient level. Her Business Administration training prepared her with the necessary skills to effectively manage her new business.

Jenny can see herself working her way up at her new job and the first step is to become a licensed agent. She is still learning the ropes and has a long way to go but is super excited for her opportunity and to continue to advance in her career. Because of the positive experiences Jenny has had with WVJC, she has recommended WVJC to several people and always refers family and friends.

Beth Ramsey – Student Highlight


Beth Ramsey is a student in West Virginia Junior College’s Dental Assisting program, where she is striving to earn her associate degree in Dental Assisting. She hopes to be able to call herself a Nationally Registered Dental Assistant.

Beth began her dental assisting classes at WVJC in June of 2018, right after graduating from high school. She is a Dean’s List student and is always looking to improve her grades and test scores.

Beth chose to study dental assisting because she has always liked going to the dentist and is interested in learning about proper dental procedures and instruments, and working with teeth in general. Beth is an active member of the Dental Assisting Club at WVJC. She attends meetings regularly and is always willing to give a helping hand when needed for club functions.

In her spare time, Beth enjoys spending time with her friends and family around the fire in the fall. She also likes to spend time with her dog, running her in the evenings when she isn’t working. Beth plans to be working at a general dentist’s office after graduating with her dental assisting degree. Within the next five years, Beth hopes to get a job in the dental field, get married, and have kids.

Presley Jordan – Student Highlight

Presley Jordan

Presley Jordan
Presley Jordan was getting ready to begin her senior year at Buckhannon Upshur High School, working part-time, and enjoying her summer vacation by relaxing and doing things outdoors with her friends and family, when she job shadowed at her dentist’s office. In her time there, she found that she really enjoyed helping people and would love a career in the dental field. She decided to explore the Dental Assisting program at West Virginia Junior College Bridgeport. Presley called High School Admissions Representative, Kristin Kirk, and set up a tour. She realized WVJC was a great fit for her.  Presley recalls, “Everyone was very hospitable and I loved the fact I could get my degree in just 18 months.”

Presley started her dental assisting classes in June 2018, just a few weeks after graduating high school. “I really enjoy the small classes and the friendly environment.,” says Jordan, “It makes the transition really easy.”  Morgan Baker, the coordinator for the Dental Assisting program, is her favorite instructor. “She genuinely cares and thoroughly teaches us the information we need to know to be successful.”

Presley is scheduled to graduate college in December of 2019 at just 19 years old.  She looks forward to her dream career as a Dental Assistant in a small scale dental office.  When asked how she would like her life to be in 5 years, she replied “In five years I will be 23, so I would like to be working as a Dental Assistant and coming home to my own living space.”  She also said she would like to be engaged to her boyfriend whom she has been with for 3 years. We at WVJC believe Presley will reach all of her goals and are happy to help her in her Dental Assisting career.

Katie Malone – Student Highlight

Deciding on a college can be an intimidating process for some. For Katie Malone, this process was rather easy…. the second time around. Like many of the students at West Virginia Junior College, Katie attended a different college prior to enrolling at WVJC. She enrolled at Westmoreland Community College, where she studied English. After two years at Westmoreland, she decided to call it quits. “They didn’t care about their students. Outside of class I never talked to my professors.”

Katie Malone

Katie decided to take a few years off, where she worked odd jobs, one of them being a receptionist job. After having a conversation with her mom who is a Registered Nurse, she decided she wanted to go back to school to study for a career in the medical field. When looking at schools this time around, Katie decided she wanted something more personalized. She found that at WVJC. “I was uncertain about going back at first. I didn’t want something like my previous college, but everyone [at WVJC] was so welcoming. It’s very personal and I knew after visiting just once that this was where I wanted to go.”

Katie started out in WVJC’s Medical Coding program. After talking with the Medical Coding program director Kacey Eagle, she decided she wanted to change lanes a bit and complete the Medical Office Administration program first, and then transition into the Medical Coding program. When asked what her favorite part of attending WVJC was, Katie said, “Well, I have a few favorite things. I love learning and so far I have learned many new interesting things. Most importantly, I love the interactions I have with my teachers and my classmates.”

When asked who her favorite teacher is, she laughed and said:

“Well, I want to give credit to a few particular ones. First would be Kacey Eagle. She changed my life. Kacey went out of her way, and actually got me my current job at the library. Second would be Lisa Frank. Lisa taught my english classes, and she believed in me when I doubted myself.”

Katie is very thankful for WVJC. “If you would have told me a year ago I would be this happy, I would not have believed you.”