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June 08, 2012

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Graduate Finds Her True Passion in Surgical Technology

Graduate Finds Her True Passion in Surgical Technology

Student Kristina Watlington just graduated from the surgical technology associate’s degree program at the Danville, Virginia Campus, and she already has a new job that she loves.

It took Kristina a while to find her true passion. She began working right out of high school in varied roles. She worked in doctors’ offices, as a teacher’s aide, and most recently as a cash applications representative for a financial corporation. But she wasn’t happy. “It wasn’t what I wanted to do for the next 30 years... It just wasn’t me.” So when the company started announcing layoffs, it gave Kristina the jumpstart she needed to make a change in her life. “It was time to go do something that made me happy,” Kristina says. And she knew college would be a step in that direction.

Kristina had always been fascinated by the operating room, so when the time came to choose a college to attend, she decided to research surgical technology programs in her area. Although there were several colleges to choose from near her North Carolina home, Kristina says she chose National College because they offered an associate’s degree program, whereas other schools offered only certificate programs.

“If I was going to go and put the effort into it, I wanted a degree out of it,” she says. She acknowledges Director of Surgical Technology Kim Joyce, whom Kristina met when she first visited the campus, with helping her choose National. “She was really excited about the program,” Kristina explains. “That drew me in, because if someone’s not excited about teaching their program, I’m not going to be excited about learning it.”

Kristina began taking classes in March 2010 and graduated this past June 1st, where she was honored with the E.M. Coulter Award for academic excellence. She completed an externship with the prestigious Wake Forest Baptist Hospital and was offered a full-time position there upon her graduation. “We’re really proud of her,” Kim said. “She’s our first graduate to get a job there.”

Even though it has taken a while to get to her dream career, Kristina says it has been worth it because she found her true calling. “You feel like even though [the operating room patients] aren’t going to remember me, they wouldn’t know me if they met me on the street, it doesn’t matter,” she said. “I made a difference in their life for that moment that they were in my room and I love that feeling.”

Kristina Watlington is pictured on the right with her daughter and Surgical Technology Director Kim Joyce (left).

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Danville Campus Graduates More Than 100

Danville Campus Graduates More Than 100

The Danville, Virginia Campus graduated 109 students at their commencement ceremony held on Friday, June 1 at George Washington High School. The guest speaker for the evening was Delegate Don Merricks, who represents the 16th District in the Virginia General Assembly. Del. Merricks encouraged the graduates to remember that success is not measured by what we do for ourselves, but by what we do for others. He also offered them four steps for achieving success: show up, pay attention, ask questions, and don’t quit.

The Alumni Hall of Achievement award was presented to Jennifer Turner who graduated from the surgical technology degree program and was immediately hired by Carilion Medical Center in Roanoke. She is now working for the campus as the surgical technology program’s clinical coordinator. “Jennifer had performed admirably while in school and impressed everyone with her intelligence and friendliness,” says Campus Director Mark Evans. “When we combined her education and experience with the fact that she has first-hand experience in the classes and would be able to relate with the students, we offered her the position.”

Jennifer’s job as clinical coordinator requires her to teach classes, take students to the various hospitals and clinics that perform surgeries, and oversee the extern program. She is also responsible, along with Surgical Technology Director Kim Joyce, for developing relationships with hospitals and expanding the number of extern sites students can use. When they began, the Danville Campus was able to use four hospitals, but that number has grown to approximately fifteen today.

After the awards presentation, Mark then presented diplomas to the eagerly waiting members of the class of 2012. “I am very excited to see so many graduates celebrating their success,” said Mark. “Not long ago, these students sat in orientation and listened to us congratulate them on beginning a journey that would reap lifelong rewards. They listened as I told them to stick with it and that one day we would celebrate together at graduation. That day is today. Congratulations to all of the graduates for their hard work and perseverance!”

Alumni Hall of Achievement winner Jennifer Turner is pictured accepting her award from Campus Director Mark Evans.

Online Tools Help Achieve Perfection

Online Tools Help Achieve Perfection

The Memphis Campus medical assisting program had a 100% Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) exam pass rate for the spring term. This is the third consecutive term that Memphis students have all passed the exam. The feat could not have been accomplished without the dedication and hard work of the students and medical instructors. Student Nukeya Oliver said, “[The program] was hard at times, but I had great teachers.”

The campus’s use of online testing tools helped the students become successful. Morris Butcher, director of healthcare education, incorporated the online training tools into his class to provide timed tests simulating the computer-based exam. “The online tools give the students exposure to computer testing, which has boosted their confidence for the exam. And it has helped our students tremendously,” Morris said.

Medical Assisting graduates (left to right) Latrice Clark, Tammy Hughes, Sharlette Davis, DeMeshia Miller, Instructor Morris Butcher, Shree Slayton, and Nukeya Oliver.

Campus Participates in Regional B2B Trade Show

Campus Participates in Regional B2B Trade Show

Each year the Lynchburg Regional Chamber of Commerce presents the region’s largest business-to-business trade show. As in previous years, the Lynchburg Campus had a big presence at this year’s event, which was held on Tuesday, May 22. The theme of this year’s trade show was “Get Fit for Success” in keeping with Mayor Joan Foster’s “Live Healthy Lynchburg” initiative. The Lynchburg Campus used the theme to demonstrate how National College is the ‘starting line’ for many people to “Get Fit for Success” as they move toward their new careers.

Career Center Director Nancy Wilcox said the trade show is a great opportunity to expand her referral network for graduate job placement. “All of the key businesses and employers are under one roof, and it is speed networking at its best,” she said.

Director of Health Care Education Sue Coleman noted how the networking opportunities at this event resulted in a new externship site for students in the pharmacy technology program. In addition, she said that they recruited three speakers for medical classes and brainstormed on some interactive activities for the students. “[It was] a very rewarding day for networking and establishing new community relations.”

Director of Health Care Education Sue Coleman is pictured on the right talking to a trade show attendee about National College.

Smart. Very smart!

Smart. Very smart!

Terisa Carter, a recent graduate of the business administration-management program at the Dayton Area Campus, is really making an impression in her new position. She completed her business externship at one of the Holiday Inn Express properties and did such a good job, that she was not only hired by the company, but was promoted shortly after she started her new job. She is now the housekeeping manager.

“I knew that I could always rely on her to get things done correctly, no matter what, because she does what it takes,” said hotel general manager Michael Hyslope of promoting Terisa. “Terisa runs the housekeeping department like a champion and all-star.”

Terisa credits the College’s externship program for expanding her knowledge of business and giving her a wider dimension of business experience. “The American National University management externship program gave me a chance to be where I am today,” she said. “At American National University, I had good support and training, which is very important.”

Business Chair Bob Abadie takes the externship program very seriously. “I have always looked at our business externships as our program’s report card because it shows the quality of our training,” he explained. “Terisa, like other externs, demonstrates that our students really are receiving top training, and this is why our employers continually ask for more externs.”

Terisa Carter is pictured with Michael Hyslope, General Manager Holiday Inn Express Dayton South.

National Student Honored with Scholarship

National Student Honored with Scholarship

Student Nora Kreidler-Estes was recently awarded a scholarship through the Tri County Chapter of Medical Assistants based on her commitment to pursuing a medical assisting career.

Before enrolling the medical assisting program at the Youngstown Campus in March 2011, Nora worked at a bakery with long, unforgiving hours and no benefits. She knew she needed a change. She started to consider attending college when she attended at a local One-Stop Workforce System seminar. She saw the medical field growing with so many opportunities, branching into areas she did not know existed. At the suggestion of a friend, she decided to look at American National University and was impressed with the small class sizes, the outstanding job placement rates, and the services that are offered should she need help with her classes. With her education, Nora hopes to one day work in a dialysis center.

“Nora's compassion, professionalism, and perseverance will lead her into a great position as a medical assistant,” said Instructor Paula Kelley. “She is always practicing her skills and helping others by way of study groups and role-playing. She really goes out of her way for others and displays the attributes of a real professional.”

Nora Kreidler-Estes is pictured in the middle with Director of Health Care Education Veronica Zurcher (left) and Instructor Paula Kelley (right).

Campus Holds Its First Graduation Ceremony

Campus Holds Its First Graduation Ceremony

On Thursday, May 31st, the Fort Wayne Campus conducted its inaugural graduation ceremony for the first 12 graduates of the new campus. Mayor Tom C. Henry served as the guest speaker and was thorough in describing the importance of the graduates’ personal accomplishments and their true value to the Fort Wayne community. He presented each one of them with an embossed leather binder and noted that only his city cabinet members and visiting dignitaries received these binders. Mayor Henry was especially proud of being able to speak at the campus’s first graduation ceremony.

Gabrielle Reinhard was one of the first 12, and received her diploma from the pharmacy technician program. She received a job offer before graduation at Lutheran Hospital. She is working full time in the hospital’s pharmacy department. She credits instructor Tanith Jones for helping her find academic success. Tanith also works for Lutheran Hospital and has encouraged her in her new job.

“Lutheran Hospital is one of two very large hospital systems in the Fort Wayne metropolitan area and her placement is a solid testimonial of National’s pharmacy technician program,” said Campus Director Clifford Buttram. Gabrielle began her studies in August 2011 and plans to continue her education in the near future.

Pictured is the Fort Wayne campus class of 2012. Gabrielle Reinhard is on the far right.

Senator Learns from Students in Visit to Campus

Senator Learns from Students in Visit to Campus

On Tuesday, May 29th, Senator Bill Stanley, who represents Virginia’s 20th senatorial district in the Virginia General Assembly, visited the Martinsville Campus to learn more about National College and to hear comments from area constituents. As he toured the facility with Campus Director John Scott, Senator Stanley got a better understanding of the career-training programs offered at the College and the graduate job placement rates. He also had an opportunity to talk to students and hear about their opinions of their education. Senator Stanley also offered comments about the economic outlook for the area and efforts he will make to improve education and the quality of life in the district.

Campus Director John Scott is pictured on the left with Virginia Senator Bill Stanley.

Campus Celebrates Its Inaugural Commencement

Campus Celebrates Its Inaugural Commencement

The South Bend Campus celebrated its first graduation ceremony on Thursday, May 24th at the Sunnyside Presbyterian Church. Jeff Rea, president of the Chamber of Commerce of St. Joseph County, gave the commencement address to 20 graduates with nearly 200 guests, staff, and faculty in attendance. Jeff spoke of the need for quality individuals in today’s workforce and how American National University plays a key role instilling knowledge and professionalism in its students for a future in our growing economy.

Twenty students graduated in five diploma programs with several continuing their education towards an associate’s degree. Adding to the ceremony were Staff Sergeants Raymond Jackson and Michele Johnson of the U.S. Army, who served as marshals for the ceremony and lead the procession of the graduates. Reverend Susan B. Haynes gave the invocation and Reverend James B. Miller the benediction. The Clay High School Music Department’s String Quintet led by Denise Kuehner provided the music for the ceremony.

Pictured is the South Bend Campus class of 2012.

Congressman Praises Graduates at Commencement

Congressman Praises Graduates at Commencement

On Friday, May 25, the Princeton Campus held its annual commencement ceremony at the Church of God in Princeton. Of the 42 graduates, 23 students received diplomas and 19 students received associate’s degrees in their respective fields.

The commencement address was delivered by Congressman Nick Rahall II of West Virginia’s 3rd District. Congressman Rahall commended the National College graduates on their drive and pursuit of professional success saying, “Whether you came to National College to get a job, to keep a job, or to one day create a job, that desire is really the heart-throb of the American economy.” He went on to recognize the relevance of the National College curriculum, specifically the medical assisting program since the medical field is, as he says, expected to grow by 25 percent in the next five years. The big change in the field, he said, will come in the form of technological advancements not only in treatment, but in record keeping. Congressman Rahall praised National for offering an educational curriculum with up-to-date training in workplace technology and assured the students that they made a “solid investment” in their education at National College.

Congressman Nick Rahall is pictured at the Princeton Campus graduation ceremony.

Career Fair Offers Opportunities for Job-Seekers

Career Fair Offers Opportunities for Job-Seekers

The Roanoke Valley Campus held a career fair on Wednesday, June 6 with over thirty local employers on hand to offer information and opportunities to job-seekers.

There was also a special booth set up to provide information regarding the new federal Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP), which will offer up to $17, 676 for unemployed veterans between the ages of 35 and 60 for 12 months of training in a high-demand career field that will lead to an associate degree, diploma, or certificate.

Many successful connections were made during the fair including one person who found a job and three others were interviewed that day. More positive results are expected as companies sort through the numerous resumes they collected from the event.

Medical assisting student Carole Pardue found the career fair to be particularly helpful. She has already completed the pharmacy technician diploma program and is now working toward an associate degree in medical assisting. She was at the career fair looking for employment while she attends classes. She was also hoping to find a possible future externship site. She spoke with several area employers at the event and said, “[The career fair] is a way to put yourself out there, and hopefully they’ll remember you.”

Carole has enjoyed her time at National. She says the instructors have helped her feel prepared to enter the workforce, either as a pharmacy technician or a medical assistant. “A lot of the instructors are people that are actually out there working,” she says. “I think that helps a lot. They’re all willing to go the extra mile to help you. I haven’t met a teacher yet that I have not liked.”

“The career fair was a great success but the success is only directly proportional to the wonderful employers who have hired our graduates on a regular basis and recognize the quality of students that we produce,” said Career Center Director Kristal Bushong. “And the students themselves are also to be commended for their desire for success and determination to change their future, and that is where the rewards for our faculty and staff are derived.”

Carole Pardue is pictured on the right talking with a representative from Carilion Clinic.

Seven Habits of a Successful Graduate

Seven Habits of a Successful Graduate

96 graduates of the Madison Campus were recognized at their commencement ceremony on Friday, June 1 at the Madison Church of Christ. Campus Director Mark Liverman presented the graduates with their degrees and diplomas in a festive atmosphere before several hundred friends and family members.
Representative Brenda Gilmore of the Tennessee General Assembly delivered practical advice to the Class of 2012 -- Seven Habits of a Successful Graduate:

- Graduates should vote – as leaders in their communities.
- Graduates should not only start well, but finish well.
- Graduates should strive to their best always.
- Graduates should help their community and country to be stronger.
- Graduates should believe in a superior being.
- Graduates should love their live and themselves.
- Graduates should always keep their “eyes on the prize.”

The message echoed many of the virtues contained in National’s mission statement, and judging by the quality of the graduates in the Class of 2012, they are well on their way to living up to Rep. Gilmore’s “Seven Habits.”

Representative Brenda Gilmore is pictured in the top photo during the graduation ceremony. Leadership winner Serdonnafer David Collier is pictured with Health Information Technology Director Carmen Bellos in the middle photo. Student Services Representative Sunshine Burr is pictured in the bottom photo accepting the Alumni Hall Achievement Award and a standing ovation from the students.

An Historic Evening in Parkersburg

An Historic Evening in Parkersburg

The Parkersburg Campus held its first graduation ceremony ever on the night of Friday, May 25 at the Parkersburg Art Center. The first five graduates—three from the phlebotomy program, one each from the medical office assistant and accounting office assistant diploma programs—were recognized in front of about 50 faculty, staff, family, and friends.

Parkersburg Mayor Robert Newell, who also spoke at the Campus’s grand opening ceremony just 11 months earlier, delivered the first commencement address. He shared with the graduates his own experience, as someone who started college later in life and did not complete his bachelor’s degree until he was nearly 40. “As you can see, it’s never too late to go back to college,” he pointed out, adding that his education was an essential part of his career success.

“Thank you for allowing me to be the speaker at this very historic moment in the Parkersburg Campus’s history,” he stated. “I think the college has nowhere to go but up…and that all of you will be very successful as well.”

Rebbecca Ankrom, one of the first phlebotomy graduates from the Parkersburg campus, is a perfect example of National graduates already realizing career success.

After experiencing other local post-secondary institutions, Rebbecca states that she was immediately drawn to National College when the campus opened in Parkersburg because of the small classroom sizes and the people who made it a friendly and encouraging community. She states enthusiastically, “This is a great school... and I tell everybody I know – especially people that are thinking about school – that they should come down and apply!”

She quickly found that the program gave her the hands-on training she needed to succeed in her externship at Camden Clark Medical Center (CCMC). In fact, she was so successful at her externship that CCMC offered her a job before she finished her externship with them. Currently Rebbecca works as a phlebotomist at CCMC and is enjoying her job immensely. She and two other phlebotomists perform over 100 blood draws over the course of her shift and she says there is “never a dull moment” at the hospital. Her enthusiasm and hard work is infectious, and the campus was thrilled to applaud her success by honoring her as the first recipient of the Achievement Award.

Parkersburg Mayor Robert Newell is pictured at the graduation ceremony in the top photo. Rebbecca Ankrom is pictured in the middle photo accepting her diploma from Campus Director Larry Sloter. In the bottom photo, four of the five graduates from the class of 2012 are pictured with faculty and staff.

Graduation 2012 Very Special for Campus

Graduation 2012 Very Special for Campus

It was a joyful commencement ceremony, tinged with sadness, for more than 130 graduates from the Nashville Campus on Saturday evening, June 2, at the Madison Church of Christ.

Prior to receiving their degrees and diplomas, the Class of 2012 recognized one of their members who was unable to be with them. Information systems engineering graduate Troy Cotten passed away due to melanoma on February 26. The Campus paid tribute to Troy’s dedication and spirit by presenting him with the Achievement Award, accepted by his mother, Shelli Isiminger. Campus Director Patrick Patterson also announced that the Campus had named the Information Systems Engineering lab, where he spent much of his time on campus, in Troy’s honor.

Commencement speaker Fabian Bedne, District 31 Councilmember on the Nashville-Davidson County Metro Council, challenged the graduates to pursue knowledge for its own sake throughout their lives. Emigrating from his native Argentina 22 years ago, the successful architect shared how he achieved things he never imagined simply by following his dreams and learning as much as he could along the way. “My advice to you: be hardworking…be excellent,” said the first-term councilmember. “I hope that you guys will take that advice and go forward, and be great!”

With the examples of their fallen classmate and a community leader, the Class of 2012 have clear models to emulate as they seek to make the most of every opportunity life presents to them.

Commencement speaker Fabian Bedne is pictured at the graduation ceremony in the top photo. Shelli Isiminger is pictured accepting an award on behalf of her late son and graduate Troy Cotton in the bottom photo.

Graduates Flourish in New Careers at Holston Medical Group

Graduates Flourish in New Careers at Holston Medical Group

Candace Gracia and Danielle Knight graduated from the medical assisting program at the Bristol Campus in 2006 and were hired shortly after that at the Holston Medical Group (HMG). For both of them, this was a significant change in career and the start to a new beginning. Prior to graduating from National College, Candace worked as an accounting clerk and then spent some time as a stay-at-home mom. When she was ready to return to school for training in a field that would let her fulfill her ambition of helping people hands-on, she chose National for the small class size and personal attention.

Danielle worked at a local factory before coming to National in search of an education that would help her get a better job. The campus’s convenient location and the medical assisting program fit what she was looking for, and she enrolled – successfully achieving her degree and landing a position as certified medical assistant (CMA) in Endocrinology at HMG.

“I love everything about my current job,” states Danielle, and she doesn’t see herself going anywhere in the next couple of years – she enjoys it so much. Candace also enjoys fulfilling her dream of making a difference in people’s lives in her position and sees herself carrying that dream on, “as long as my body and mind will allow me,” she says passionately. They encourage students who are pursuing their education at National to “Stay with it” (Danielle) and “Pay attention to your instructors – they know what they are talking about!” (Candace). We are proud of both of them and congratulate them both on their hard work and achievement!

Graduate Felt at Home at National

Graduate Felt at Home at National

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. That’s been my motto throughout life,” said Nivra Arvin Lainhart (pictured), who attended both the Richmond, Kentucky and the Roanoke Valley, Virginia campuses of American National University to earn her diploma in medical billing and coding in 2002.

Nivra’s journey to a rewarding career in healthcare has led her to the Estill County Health Department in Irvine, Kentucky where she helps care for and educate her community on health and safety issues.
“I knew I would always have a job in the medical field,” she recalled citing her motivation for enrolling at the Richmond Campus. She transferred to the Roanoke Campus after her husband went there to work. She found that instructors at both campuses were available to talk with her anytime that she had a question or concern. “I was away from home…I didn’t know anyone… but I had them….they were really supportive of me,” she said of the Roanoke faculty.

After graduating and returning to Richmond, Nivra worked for a family practice for 5 years where her duties were expanded to include everything from front office work to labs.

At the Estill County Health Department she coordinates programs such as the WIC program, women’s cancer screenings, well-child exams and even car seat inspections. She was recently selected to begin working for the HANDS program where she will make home visits to pregnant women and to families with newborns to 2-year-olds to answer questions and provide support. She describes herself as a “people person” and loves interacting with the public.

Nivra is active in her community as a volunteer and was a member of the inaugural class of Leadership Estill County. She was the first to be named an Estill County Captain. “The chamber gave it to me for my works in the county and for volunteering. It was an honor,” she said.

She encourages students and new graduates to volunteer in their community which she said is a great way to gain experience and to make contacts. She also suggested that they be patient as they begin their own journey to the career of their dreams. “You can’t get discouraged…it’s not instant…I look back and it’s been 10 years and I’ve had to do a couple of things that I didn’t want to do but it’s all lead me to where I want to be.”

Graduate Pursues Second Degree to Land her Dream Job

Graduate Pursues Second Degree to Land her Dream Job

Prior to enrolling at American National University, Florentina Hunt (pictured) was employed for many years in the fast-food industry. "I had dreams of working in accounting, but I needed to [work to] support my family,” she said.

After many years of working hard in a very challenging environment, both mentally and physically, Florentine realized that it was time to make a career change. “The job I was in was slowly but surely stealing my health."

Florentina learned of the many career opportunities at American National University through her daughter who is working at the Lexington Campus as an admissions representative. With her daughter’s support, she decided to pursue her dreams and enrolled in the business administration-accounting degree program in 2009.

"I've always loved numbers and mathematics. It was my favorite subject in school and a career in accounting seemed like a perfect fit for me," Florentina said. She finished the associate’s degree program in 2011 and rolled right into the bachelor’s program which she will finish later this year in November.

She was especially fond of her instructors for helping her be successful in her program. “[The] instructors actually work in accounting and they bring practical, real-life instruction to their students. They provide lots of one-on-one instruction and a hands-on approach that makes the material understandable and, in turn, makes learning enjoyable.”

Florentina is currently working for a local accounting firm and thoroughly enjoys all aspects of her job. "American National University gave me a chance to follow my dream career.”

Expanding Skills Results in Expanding Career Opportunities for Graduate

Expanding Skills Results in Expanding Career Opportunities for Graduate

Belva Bodner (pictured), a graduate from the Danville, Kentucky Campus, said that she was holding back tears when she walked across the stage to receive her diploma during the campus’ graduation ceremony last month. Belva, who just completed the medical assisting degree program in May, had two reasons to celebrate - she earned her associate’s degree and she began a new career as a medical assistant for the Central Kentucky Interventional Pain Clinic in Danville.

Belva had worked as a registered X-ray technician for 37 years when she decided to return to school. “I wanted to make changes and there are places where X-ray modality requires some medical assisting skills,” she explained. She came to American National University because of the small, more personal classes which she found to be less stressful.

She first began working at the Central Kentucky Interventional Pain Clinic as an extern. She said that the clinic was eager to have her begin her externship there and about half way through her placement they offered her a job.

Belva enjoys her work at the clinic as she assists the physician with a variety of pain and steroid injections. She also takes patients vitals, triages patients and works in the office scheduling appointments and handling insurance pre-certifications. She looks forward to many more rewarding years working in the medical field as she continues to grow in her career in health care.

Family Advice Leads to a New Career for Graduate

Family Advice Leads to a New Career for Graduate

Lat Diouf (pictured) had a dream of working in the medical field but being from the Republic of Senegal in western Africa meant realizing his dream would be a challenge. He said that in Senegal, “If your parents are poor as mine were, you are usually limited to a high school education.” This motivated him to follow his dream by relocating to the United States. He knew that there would be cultural and communications challenges to overcome, but he was determined to make his dream a reality.

Lat moved to the United States to pursue his dream but he had to find a job first. His niece, Yaye Diop attended the Florence Campus and earned a business administration-management degree. She encouraged her uncle to consider attending American National University.

He ended up losing his job so he was able to enroll with tuition assistance from the Workforce Investment Act. As a student, Lat believes that his medical, English, and computer classes enriched his life personally and professionally. With supportive instructors, staff, and family members, Lat received his degree in medical assisting last month.

Lat is now using his new medical skills as an employee for Medlab, a clinical laboratory that offers lab testing services for nursing homes, physicians’ offices, hospitals, and corporations.

V2E Conference Helps Veterans Build Small Businesses

V2E Conference Helps Veterans Build Small Businesses

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Small Business Development Centers conducted a Veteran 2 Entrepreneur Conference on Tuesday, May 22 at the Louisville Campus which was held in conjunction with the Operation Hire Patriots Veterans Job Fair. The conference provided resources, networking and information sessions aimed at assisting veterans in building and growing a small business. Over 50 veterans attended the conference.

“We are glad to partner with the SBA and the Small Business Development Centers on this conference,” said Bradley Marine, regional director of military affairs for American National University. “We want to help veterans in finding the resources they need to find employment – like the newly announced Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) for veterans that are currently unemployed between the ages of 35 and 60.” Combined with the College’s exclusive Blue Ribbon Grant, qualified veterans could have little to no out-of-pockets costs to get a college education.

“At SBA, we are grateful for the cooperation of partners like American National University and the Small Business Development Centers who can put on a well-attended, useful event and make it free for those who come,” said Ralph Ross, District Director of the SBA. “The economy is growing again but we are still not back to full employment…Our veterans have served us once in uniform and many of them serve us again by starting businesses and creating jobs. We owe them all the help we can offer.

The Lexington Campus will hold a V2E conference in conjunction with their Operation Hire Patriots Veterans Job Fair on Friday, August 24 and additional V2E conferences will be scheduled at several other Kentucky Campuses of American National University soon. For more information about the Lexington V2E Conference call (859) 253-0621.

Ralph Ross, district director of the SBA, is pictured talking to V2E Conference attendees about resources available to veterans who want to start or build small businesses.

New Job Inspires Confidence

New Job Inspires Confidence

Miranda Elswick (pictured), a graduate from the Pikeville Campus, has been hired as a medical assistant for Pikeville Medical Center. In her new job, she assists patients in their medical care and she gathers information from charts for insurance claims for several different offices. She enjoys meeting new people on a daily basis and gives credit to American National University for the success she has found in her new job.

She came to National because of the flexible hours and small class size that provided more one-on-one time with the instructors. “I enjoyed all of my instructors in the medical assisting program,” she explained. “They were all helpful and eager to teach their students.”

Earning her degree has given her the confidence she needs to face whatever life has in store for her and has made her family proud. “My seven year old daughter says she is going to American National University after she graduates high school,” she said. Miranda plans on taking online classes through National to earn a bachelor’s degree in health care management.

The National News is a biweekly publication designed to share the success and academic accomplishments of students and graduates from American National University and National College. For more information, contact the Communications Department.

In accordance with the regulations of the Tennessee Higher Education Council, all references to "American National University" refer to "National College" in the state of Tennessee.