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June 25, 2012

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Perseverance Pays Off for Student as he Graduates and Finds Rewarding New Career

Perseverance Pays Off for Student as he Graduates and Finds Rewarding New Career

Steven Hancock knows the value of hard work. He recently graduated from the information systems engineering (ISE) degree program at the Knoxville Campus and has found a new career despite many challenges.

Prior to enrolling at National College, he had worked in several different industries, including construction, manufacturing, transportation, and healthcare. When he decided to enroll in college, he was looking for a career that would enable him to support his large family. Although he enjoyed working in the medical field, he was intrigued with the campus’s ISE program and especially appreciated that it was Microsoft accredited.

Despite the fact that during his time at National Steven faced many personal hardships, he managed to stay on course in his degree and persevered in working at his externship as a computer technician for DeRoyal Medical Supplies.

Not only was Steven able to gain hands-on experience at DeRoyal, he was also able to combine his interests in the medical and technology fields. He enjoyed it so much that when his externship was over, he offered to work for DeRoyal as a volunteer so he could continue learning. Impressed with the quality of his work and his enthusiasm and dedication, they hired him as a permanent member of their staff.

Steven is excited about his new career path. “It’s an enlightening situation, going from just a regular laborer with no skills to having a career,” he says. “Every day I wake up proud.”

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MBA Program Uses Class Project to Help Marketing Efforts of Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure

MBA Program Uses Class Project to Help Marketing Efforts of Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure

Students in the MBA program at the Roanoke Valley Campus recently participated in the development of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure for the VA Blue Ridge Affiliate. Student Melanie Fleenor was the operations chair for the event and recruited her fellow students in the MBA program to help her. Jaime Rebkovich, instructor of the Business and Society class, agreed to allow the MBA students work this event as a class assignment, applying the principles they were learning in class to their volunteer efforts.

On April 18th, Melissa Woodson, executive director of the VA Blue Ridge Affiliate, visited the class and expressed a need for assistance with expanding their marketing plan, creating a brochure, and gaining visibility and connection in the local community.

The class broke out into three groups to work on different aspects of the project. One group worked on creating a brochure, while another group worked on developing a marketing plan that included ideas on how to increase the foundation’s awareness in the community. Ideas included putting fliers (which the group created) in area businesses and increasing the local affiliate’s presence online via facebook and twitter. Finally, the third group contacted a few local businesses to see if they would be interested in partnering with Komen for fundraising events that would both bring in customers.

Ms. Woodson was very pleased with the support of the MBA students. “I cannot tell you how much having this brochure means to our organization,” she said of the brochure that was created. “The critical thinking skills that went into the layout of this brochure are indeed outstanding,” she says, thanking the MBA students, “I am grateful for your hard work and diligence.”

Pictured are MBA students and representatives from the Susan G. Komen foundations - (Clockwise from bottom left) Shana Roche (student), Joseph Bryant (graduate), Sadie Powell (student), Fawn Reed (student), Elizabeth Woodford and Melissa Woodson of Komen, and Melanie Dornon (student) were part of the Business and Society class which assisted the foundation’s Blue Ridge Affiliate.

Club Zero’ Rewards Students For Perfect Attendance

Club Zero’ Rewards Students For Perfect Attendance

On June 7, the Stark County Campus recognized student Monique Anderson for her perfect attendance. This award is the start of a program called “Club Zero,” which represents perfect attendance during a specific term by being on time to class every day with zero absences. Monique is glad to be the first member of this club and plans to earn more: “I will be earning this award every term until I receive my degree,” she says with determination. The campus is excited to kick off this new program with Monique to encourage all students to attend every class and put forth their very best effort for academic success.

Director of Health Care Education Suzette Best, Receptionist Antoinette Bowen, and Campus Director Jill Morrow are pictured as they induct Monique Anderson (with award) into “Club Zero.”

Graduates and Alumnus Honored at Commencement

Graduates and Alumnus Honored at Commencement

The Akron Area Campus awarded 82 graduates their degrees and diplomas on Saturday, June 2nd during the commencement ceremony held at the Cuyahoga Falls Auditorium in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. Graduates, their family and friends, and faculty and staff were in high spirits for the event.

The United States Army National Guard and Northeast Ohio Honor Guard Detail began the ceremony by posting the colors. Stow Mayor Sara Drew gave an inspiring speech to the graduates during the ceremony. She shared how her mother was a coal miner’s daughter in Western Pennsylvania, who moved to Ohio and went to college to be a librarian and how it changed her life. Mayor Drew congratulated the graduates for their hard work and dedication and wished them success in their future endeavors.

Many honors and achievement awards were presented to graduates. The Alumni Hall of Achievement Award was presented to Ramsey Garnica who graduated from the information systems engineering degree program in December 2010. Before attending National, Ramsey was a soldier for the US Army and served in Iraq. He is now working as a technical consultant for Quality IP where he started working shortly after graduating. He has also been active in the community doing volunteer work for a food kitchen and a homeless shelter for veterans where he fixes all computer related issues. He has accumulated an impressive list of certifications. (Click this link to see an article about Ramsey in the National News in May 2011:

Students Take CPR and ‘Heart Saver’ Course

Students Take CPR and ‘Heart Saver’ Course

The Princeton Campus recently hosted a CPR training and “heart saver” first-aid course for students in the medical assisting degree program. Medical assisting students must be certified in CPR prior to beginning their externship. Vicky Lilly and Cheryl Peery are the two students that took advantage of this most recent course taught by Director of Health Care Education Patricia Sell who is also an American Heart Association Certified BLS instructor

Both Vicky and Cheryl are nearing the end of their degree programs. Vicky is completing her externship with Dr. Al’Atar - a pediatrician in Princeton who frequently provides externship rotations for National College and has hired multiple National graduates. She has been doing administrative work as well as clinical duties at her site. She said that giving injections to babies is probably the most challenging part of her externship but she values the experience. Cheryl is also externing at a pediatrician’s office for Dr. Munif in Bluefield VA. Dr. Munif puts externs through rotations of the different job duties. Cheryl is currently doing the administrative portion of her rotation. Both students are looking forward to graduating and starting a new career in medical assisting.

Cheryl Peery and Vicky Lilly are pictured as they practice CPR.

Instructor Honored for his Academic Accomplishments and Service to Community

Instructor Honored for his Academic Accomplishments and Service to Community

On Monday June 18th, State Senator John Eklund who represents Ohio’s 18th district, paid a visit to the Cleveland Area Campus and awarded Instructor James Joudrey with a State Proclamation lauding his accomplishments in academics and his work within the community.

While at the campus, Senator Eklund toured the campus with Campus Director Susan Brophy. Susan also shared information about the College’s many career training opportunities available to Cleveland area students in hopes of finding new careers. The visit was capped by a question and answer period with the senator and about fifty students, faculty, and staff.

The Senator left National with a sincere appreciation for National students and their intention to change their lives with an education.

Sen. Eklund (center) is pictued with Campus Director Susan Brophy as he presents the State Proclamation to James Joudrey.

Graduates Begin Careers At a Top Regional Hospital

Graduates Begin Careers At a Top Regional Hospital

Floyd Memorial Hospital, which was recently recognized as one of the top five “Best Regional Hospitals” for the Metro Louisville area by U.S. News and World Report, has recently hired three surgical technology graduates from the Louisville Campus. National graduates Robert Coole, Kelly Stewart, and Miranda Mallicoat have found new careers at Floyd Memorial which performs over 900 surgeries a month. Both Robert and Kelly worked at the hospital as externs and they were both hired during their externship, before graduation. Shortly thereafter, when Miranda applied for an open position at Floyd Memorial Hospital her fellow classmate, Robert, put in a recommendation on her behalf that helped her secure her job.

Kathy Robinson, clinical manager of surgical services and sterile processing for Floyd Memorial, said that she has found that externs from American National University consistently possess the demeanor and skills that they look for in an employee: “They don’t sit back,” she said, “They jump in and try to learn.” She also explained that the students she has worked with from National have been respectful and they fit in well in the operating room for all types of surgeries.

Jeffrey Lawrence, operating room director, agreed with Kathy’s impression of National students and shared how important it is to find an employee who will stay calm and who can work under the pressures of an operating room: “When it comes down to it where they really need it during a trauma…[American National University graduates are] calm, they’re collected, they handle it well,” he says, “having that coming out of college is what we’re looking for.”

Robert, who worked in retail management for many years before enrolling in the surgical technology program at National, said that it was an honor to be offered the job at Floyd Memorial during his externship. “It makes you feel proud that someone recognizes you for what you’re doing…for what you’re capable of,” he said.

Kelly, who works in the Floyd Memorial Birthing Center, said that she was determined to show confidence and go above and beyond what was required to help her land the job. “I made it very clear that this is where I wanted to be,” she recalled, “I’d say ‘How can I make sure that I stand out so they’ll remember me.’”

Robert, Kelly, and Miranda are now enjoying their new careers as surgical technologists. “It’s different every day,” said Miranda. “There’s never a dull moment.” They encourage others not to hesitate in getting the career training that they need to land their dream job. “It’s given me a whole new career,” Robert said. “I totally started over. I worked two jobs and went to school full-time the whole time so if you want it, you can do it,” said Robert. “It doesn’t matter what age—just go do it,” added Kelly.

Graduates Robert Coole and Kelly Stewart are pictured above in the operating room at Floyd Memorial Hospital.

Graduate's Second Career Is a Dream Come True

Graduate's Second Career Is a Dream Come True

Nicole Moore came to American National University with a bachelor’s degree in horticulture. She and her husband operated his landscaping business very successfully for many years but between the physical demands of the job and trying to raise children, Nicole began looking into other options. She loved math and enjoyed her accounting duties at her husband's business so she began thinking about a career in accounting. She was guided to the Lexington Campus by her sister, who had previously earned her medical assisting degree at the Richmond Campus.

With the support of her husband and children, Nicole earned her associate’s degree in business administration-accounting in 2010 and finished her bachelor’s this past May. "I feel like it showed my children a valuable lesson - if you work hard you will succeed in school and in life,” she said. “They saw I could work, care for my family, and earn my degrees at the same time. They are all very proud of me!"

Nicole credits her instructors for helping her finish two degrees. "The instructors bring real-world experiences to the classes and they show you know how utilize your news skills,” she explained. She liked how they also encouraged students to think creatively for a lot of different scenarios they might face in their careers. She also noted that the class schedules were helpful while managing so many other responsibilities at home.

Nicole is now using her degree as an employee for an accounting firm in Lexington called Cushny. She had dreams of a new career and she says, “A great education can make those dreams come true!"

New Degrees Give Graduate a New Career

New Degrees Give Graduate a New Career

Jaclyn Engle was a stay-at-home mom but she decided that she wanted to be able to provide more for her children. She heard about American National University through a family member and decided to enroll in the Pikeville Campus so she could work to make a change.

Jaclyn originally chose the phlebotomy certificate program but later decided that she would like to earn a degree. She graduated from the phlebotomy program in 2009 and began the medical assisting associate’s degree program shortly thereafter.

The small class sizes at National were just what she was looking for and she found all of her instructors to be very knowledgeable. During her final term she worked as an extern for a local doctor’s office and she was able to use the skills she had learned in the classroom in a real world setting.

“National has not only given me an education and the experience I need to be the best at my job but also a family that will always be there cheering me on, every step of the way,” she says enthusiastically about her experience as a student.

Now Jaclyn is employed as a medical assistant at the local hospital and her family couldn’t be more proud of her. “My family loves that I went above and beyond as a single mother and overcame obstacles to reach my ultimate goals,” she shared. Jaclyn plans to continue working as a medical assistant until her son begins school and then come back to National and enroll in the Nursing program.

Student Passes Professional Computer Certification

Student Passes Professional Computer Certification

Josh Linville is so glad that he took his mother’s advice and enrolled in the information systems engineering degree program at the Florence Campus. As a recent American National University graduate, his mother, Nannette Frederick, shared with Josh her great experience at National and suggested to him to pursue a degree. He enrolled in November of 2011 and is maintaining a good grape point average.

In fact, he has been doing so well that he recently passed the Microsoft A+ certification exam. He feels that this is quite an accomplishment for him since he only knew how to surf the Internet a year ago.

With his recently acquired knowledge, Josh said that he now knows the different software applications, operating systems, components of a computer, and how to repair computers. With these skills and his certification, he is on his way to fulfilling his goal of being a small business owner.

Josh Linville is pictured in the campus's computer lab.

GED Graduate Quickly Dives into National College Medical Programs

GED Graduate Quickly Dives into National College Medical Programs

On Thursday, June 14, Virgie Douglas, director of admissions for the Richmond Campus, attended the Madison County GED graduation ceremony to support soon-to-be National student Frances “Marie” Lamb.

Frances “Marie” Lamb is enrolled in the medical assisting and pharmacy technician programs and began classes on June 18th, just four days after earning her GED. She met with Virgie after a friend recommended National to her. When Marie mentioned that she’d be at the GED graduation ceremony, Virgie told her that she’d be there to cheer her on as she received her diploma. “American National University always attends the GED graduation,” Virgie said. “It’s what we do…as far as showing support.”

After attending a couple of classes, Marie feels encouraged. She said she likes that the programs will take her just 2 years to complete. “I want to get a better career,” she explained.

Medical Professionals Tell Students in Workshop How to Interview Successfully

Medical Professionals Tell Students in Workshop How to Interview Successfully

On Tuesday, June 12, the Danville, Kentucky Campus held a career workshop with mock interviews demonstrating what not to do during an interview. Over 20 students attended the workshop that was conducted by two professionals from local medical offices, Mary Vest with the Danville Pain Clinic and Matthew Adams with Danville Medical Specialist.

Ms. Vest and Mr. Adams talked about what they look for in resumes and interviews and about the things that people should not do during an interview. “It’s one thing for us to tell [students what they should do] but it’s something else when it comes from the professional people,” said Director of Health Care Education Virginia Patterson who participated in the mock interview as an example of what not to do.

Lori Everett-Evans, a student in the medical assisting program, participated in the workshop and said that she learned a lot from it. “The mock interview was hilarious because Virginia portrayed what not to do so her answers kind of took you aback,” said Lori. “It was kind of shocking and informative all at the same time.”

“There are some things that you would think people would know that you don’t do during an interview but, obviously, they do it anyway,” said Virginia. “[Ms. Vest and Mr. Adams] both said that they have had people do these things during interviews.”

Virginia said students should keep in mind that first impressions are important and simple things like being sure to shower and shave before an interview are sometimes overlooked. “They’ve decided within the first five minutes of talking to you whether they want to continue talking to you,” Virginia said of employers.

Matthew Adams (standing) of Danville Medical Specialists is pictured speaking to students at the career workshop about how best to handle interviews.

Representative Visits to Promote Voter Registration

Representative Visits to Promote Voter Registration

The Madison Campus was honored to have a visit from State Representative Brenda Gilmore, who represents Tennessee’s 54th district. As a part of the campus’ promotion of voter registration week, Representative Gilmore emphasized to students that their vote counted in the community and she encouraged them to register to vote in time to participate in the November elections. She explained how she was elected to office in a close race with just a few more votes than her opponent.

Rep. Gilmore told students not to let the paperwork hold them back from registering to vote and offered guidance for a better understanding of the voter registration forms. Her visit inspired students to be more involved.

Campus Director Mark Liverman and Vice President of Operations for the Tennessee Division Cyndee Perdue Moore are pictured as they welcome Rep. Gilmore (center).

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.