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May 06, 2013


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SPOTLIGHT ON SUCCESS

Campus Celebrates New Graduates and Their Academic Achievements

Campus Celebrates New Graduates and Their Academic Achievements

On Tuesday, April 23rd, the Martinsville Campus held a graduation ceremony to celebrate the academic achievements of the Class of 2013. Approximately 95 graduates accepted their diplomas in front of an audience of family and friends. Among the graduates were four who received their bachelor’s degrees from the American National University online program.

Campus director John Scott began the ceremony with a warm welcome before he introduced guest speaker Laura Cary, business services manager for the Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce. Ms. Cary talked to graduates about her experience of finishing her education later in life. She related to the challenges students face when they decide to go to college with family and work obligations. She applauded the efforts of the Class of 2013 in completing their education, and offered them hope for their future with their new skills and career training.

After the keynote address, awards were distributed to many deserving graduates. Annette Lawson, the campus’s career center director, received the Alumni Hall of Achievement Award. Annette graduated from the Martinsville Campus with a diploma in 1999 and then transferred her credits to another university to earn a bachelor’s degree in business administration. You can read her story in the October 29, 2012 issue of the National News. She is glad to use her education to assist National College graduates as they search for jobs and start their new careers through the campus’s career center.

Business administration-management student David Bibee received the Leadership Award, which is presented to a graduate who, above all else, has exhibited excellent leadership, organizational, and motivational abilities, and who personifies the highest level of leadership among the graduates. Medical assisting graduate Tammy Cannaday received the E.M. Coulter Award for her academic achievement of high honors. Tabitha Foley, graduate of the medical office specialist and medical billing and coding diploma programs, received the Mary P. McGurn Award. Tabitha Mahajan, graduate of the office technology professional degree program, received the M.A. Smythe Award. Sally Jinright, graduate of the business administration-accounting degree program, received the Joseph E. Hurn Award.

Laura Cary, business services manager for the Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce, is pictured in top photo addressing the crowd of graduates at the Martinsvillle Campus graduation ceremony. Matt Poole, director of the American National University Online Programs, is pictured on the left in the middle photo with George Clark, who participated in the Martinsville Campus graduation ceremony to accept his bachelor of business administration-management degree from the online program. In the bottom photo, graduate Tabitha Mahajan is pictured accepting the M.A. Smythe Award from campus director John Scott at the Martinsvillle Campus graduation ceremony.

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LYNCHBURG
Graduate Offers Sound Advice When Featured in "Work It, Lynchburg"

Graduate Offers Sound Advice When Featured in

Since graduating from the Lynchburg Campus in 2009, Debbie Montgomery has not only established herself in a successful career, but she plays a major role in the Lynchburg business community. She is the executive director of the Retail Merchants Foundation and the Retail Merchants Association, which the Lynchburg Campus recently joined.

Debbie is appreciative of the opportunities and experiences gained through her National College education. “Attending National College was absolutely one of the best decisions I have made,” she said. “The whole experience was positive. I had great professors—everyone took the time to listen, and they pushed me beyond my comfort zone.” She was specifically grateful for the instructor that made her confront her fear of public speaking. “They gave me the confidence to overcome that fear, and this has helped me be successful in my job, since I have to do that quite a bit.”

Recently, Debbie was featured in the “Work It, Lynchburg” section of the Lynchburg News and Advance and passed along a good piece of advice about the secret to her personal success. “Be fair, honest, and respectful,” she said. “Good customer service goes a long way towards keeping clients coming back, and sending other potential customers to your doorstep. Always be honest with your customers.”

Debbie Montgomery graduated from the computerized office applications program at the Lynchburg Campus in 2009 and is now working as the executive director of the Retail Merchants Foundation and the Retail Merchants Association.


ROANOKE VALLEY
Students Learn From Coca Cola

Students Learn From Coca Cola

The Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce invited students and staff from the Roanoke Valley Campus of American National University to participate in this year’s Career Focus Dinners which provided students with information about businesses and career opportunities in the Roanoke region. Career center director Kristal Bushong accompanied students Andrew Searight, Theodore Bratton, and Nasser Alaskar at a recent dinner, where they learned more about Coca Cola Consolidated Bottling Company, which has been in the Roanoke Valley as a top-rated employer for approximately 120 years.

Participants learned about the daily operations and specialized intricacies specific to Coca Cola Bottling and the production, marketing, and distribution throughout several states. Coca Cola representatives Glenn Hager, regional logistics manager of the Virginias; Rick Viar, human resources manager of the Virginias; and Robert Gattoni, quality assurance manager for Roanoke, talked to the dinner participants about employment opportunities in relation to their particular degree field.

“I was completely taken aback when I realized how much that Coca Cola did for their employees and the community,” Andrew said of what he learned through the Career Focus Dinner. He was so impressed with what he had learned that he decided he wanted to work for Coca Cola. Andrew has earned an associate’s and bachelor’s degree from the business administration-management program and is now attending the Master of Business Administration program. He specifically recalled how his classroom training on ISO standards would be useful if he was hired by Coca Cola.

Nasser, a student in the ESL program, said he also benefited from the Career Focus Dinner. “This is such a wonderful experience and I can’t wait to tell all of my friends back home that I got to go to Coca Cola.”

Pictured at Coca Cola are (l to r) National College career center director Kristal Bushong, Coca Cola quality assurance manager Robert Gattoni, students Andrew Searight, Theodore Bratton, Nasser Alaskar, and Coca Cola regional logistics manager Glenn Hagar.


DANVILLE, VIRGINIA
Veteran Finishes Degree Program Early Thanks to Transfer Credits

Veteran Finishes Degree Program Early Thanks to Transfer Credits

Will Holley retired from the U.S. Air Force in 2006 after 20 years of service. Upon retirement, he and his wife Laura, who also retired from the military as a member of the US Army, moved to Southside Virginia to start their new lives outside of the service. Will started working in the parts department for a Harley-Davidson shop but he wanted more for a career.

He had taken some courses from Air University, Cisco Junior College, and McMurry University but it wasn’t enough to start a new career. He learned about the Danville, Virginia Campus of National College and liked the small class sizes and personal attention. He was also excited to learn that National accepted the credits he earned from his previous education.

After attending several classes and working at the Harley-Davidson shop, Will developed a new career goal of becoming a Harley-Davidson franchise owner. He felt that a degree from the business administration-management program would help him reach his goal.

Thanks to his transfer credits, Will finished the associate’s degree program early and graduated in February 2013. He immediately re-enrolled into an online bachelor’s degree program through American National University. He credits National with being the “catalyst” to continuing his education and pursuing his goals.

Laura graduated from the administrative office professional program in November 2012 and has found a new career in banking. Laura and Will were featured in the October 15, 2012 issue of National News.

Will Holley plans to combine his education and love for Harley-Davidson motorcycles to start a new Harley-Davidson franchise.


CHARLOTTESVILLE
University Physicians Group Offers Students Real-World Experience

University Physicians Group Offers Students Real-World Experience

The Charlottesville Campus recently recognized the University Physicians Group (UPG) as a Distinguished Community Employer for their support of the campus’s medical billing and coding program. Since 2010, when the campus formed a partnership with UPG, several students have completed successful externships at UPG where they were able to get hands-on experience in a real medical office. In addition to their support of the externship program, UPG has also hired numerous graduates from the program as well.

Tina Rosson, human resources generalist for UPG, said, “We are glad to support the program and our departments benefit from our [partnership].” Debby Houston, billing and document specialist for UPG agreed with Tina. Debby’s job includes the oversight of multiple outpatient clinics in Charlottesville and surrounding counties and she is also the extern supervisor. She is able to provide students a wide range of training opportunities.

Charlottesville campus director Kelly Chamberlain is pictured in the center presenting a plaque of appreciation to Debby Houston (left) and Tina Rosson (right) from the University Physicians Group.


PIKEVILLE
Pikeville Campus Celebrates Achievements of the Class of 2013

Pikeville Campus Celebrates Achievements of the Class of 2013

On Monday, April 22nd, graduates from the Pikeville Campus reached the moment they had dreamed of and worked so diligently for, as family and friends gathered to celebrate their success during the campus’s 2013 commencement ceremony.

The service, which was held at the Landmark Inn’s Mark V Conference Center, featured Pike County Attorney Howard Keith Hall as guest speaker. Hall commended the graduates for successfully completing their programs. He expressed particular gratitude for the large number of graduates who would be entering the medical field because of the contributions that they would make in serving their community.

During the ceremony, awards for high academic achievement were presented to graduates from the business, information systems engineering, and medical programs: the M.A. Smythe Award to James Bailey, information systems engineering program graduate; the E.M. Coulter Award to Kristen Harris, medical assisting program graduate; the Joseph E. Hurn Award to Carla Looney, business administration-accounting program graduate; and, the Mary P. McGurn Award to Amanda Ashley, medical office assistant program graduate. In addition, Hattie Sturgill received the campus’s Leadership Award, and Amy King was the recipient of the Achievement Award. Nicole Hall, who graduated in 2010 with a double major in computer applications technology and business administration-management, was given the Alumni Hall of Achievement Award.

In closing, Hall told the graduates that it’s important to always have a good attitude and he encouraged them to continue their quest for self-improvement by reading books such as The Bible and Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People. He said that they would remember graduating from college as one of the greatest moments of their life. “There are a lot of special times in your life,” Hall explained. “But when you get a degree from a college…this is a really big deal.”

In the top photo, director of health care education Wilma Storey (far left) is pictured with medical assisting graduates during the Pikeville Campus graduation. In the bottom photo, Pike County Attorney Howard Keith Hall is pictured at the Pikeville Campus commencement ceremony.


LOUISVILLE
American Urgent Care Named a Distinguished Community Employer by the Louisville Campus

American Urgent Care Named a Distinguished Community Employer by the Louisville Campus

The Louisville Campus has named American Urgent Care as a Distinguished Community Employer because of its support of American National University students and career training. American Urgent Care, an immediate care facility which is owned by a group of physicians, currently employs two American National University graduates and also accepts externs from the campus’s medical assisting program.

On Tuesday, April 30, campus director Vincent Tinebra and career center director Donna Reed-Carson presented a plaque of recognition to American Urgent Care practice manager Jack McCoy. Mr. McCoy stated that he enjoys giving students the opportunity to extern at American Urgent Care. “It’s a learning process,” he said, adding that externships also give him an opportunity to evaluate the skills and work ethic of potential employees before he hires them.

Mr. McCoy said he requires the medical assistants that he hires to be registered medical assistants (RMA) or certified medical assistants (CMA) so he likes that American National University medical assistants take the RMA certification exam as part of their program. “It adds to the professionalism of the organization to have certified medical assistants,” he explained. In addition to superior clinical skills, Mr. McCoy also hires medical assistants who provide excellent customer service to his patients. “I look at personality,” he said adding that RMA Necole Arnold, a 2012 graduate who came to American National University through the Workforce Investment Act program, is one example of a medical assistant who has a great bedside manner. “She is fabulous. She’s terrific with the kids and the families. If we don’t treat them right—they’ll go somewhere else,” he said.

Louisville campus director Vincent Tinebra (left) and career center director Donna Reed-Carson (2nd from right) are pictured in the top photo presenting a plaque of appreciation to American Urgent Care practice manager Jack McCoy (2nd left) and assistant office manager Maria Taylor. American Urgent Care practice manager Jack McCoy is pictured in the bottom photo with American National University medical assisting graduate Necole Arnold. Mr. McCoy said that Necole has a great rapport with the children and families that the immediate care facility serves.


RICHMOND
City of Richmond Employee Receives National College Alumni Hall of Achievement Award

City of Richmond Employee Receives National College Alumni Hall of Achievement Award

Alice Harris, a 2006 graduate from the Richmond Campus’s administrative office specialist diploma program, has been given the American National University Alumni Hall of Achievement Award. Harris is employed by the City of Richmond in the Section 8 Housing Office where she works as the family self-sufficiency coordinator.

Campus director Keeley Gadd presented the award to Harris during the campus’s 2013 commencement ceremony which was held on Friday, April 19th at First Baptist Church of Richmond. “We feel that the induction in the Alumni Hall of Achievement is the most distinguished award that we can bestow upon an alumnus,” Gadd explained to the audience when presenting the award to Harris.

Harris came to American National University to retool herself and update her computer and communications skills after she was laid off from a company where she had worked for 21 years. She qualified for funding for her education through the Workforce Investment Act and the exclusive American National University Workforce Development Grant which matches tuition assistance from agencies.

In her job as family self-sufficiency coordinator, Harris helps empower her clients to improve their lives as she assists them in looking for jobs, finding career training, and more. She has said that her greatest joy comes from a client calling or stopping by to let her know that they got a job because this makes her feel like she has made a difference.

Richmond campus director Keeley Gadd is pictured on the left presenting the Alumni Hall of Achievement Award to 2006 graduate Alice Harris.


FLORENCE
"Life-long Learner" Continues Her Education after Graduating From National

Charlene Roberts, a graduate from the Florence Campus, considers herself a “life-long learner.” She earned a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Cincinnati in 1978, earned her business administration-management associate’s degree at American National University in 2008, and she is now continuing her education at Strayer University where she is enrolled in the Master of Education program with a core in adult learners.

Charlene came to American National University at a turning point in her life as her daughter was reaching adulthood and her husband was ill and in a nursing home. The company where she was working as a customer service representative provided tuition reimbursement which helped her to fund her education.

Charlene said that her education at American National University helped her regain her self-confidence and gave her the courage to continue her education to earn a higher degree. She feels that the knowledge from her business administration-management degree program will be applied often in her future career in education. “Education is a business and you have to be aware of that. And, you may end up working in a business, so you have to be aware of what a business organization looks like,” she explained. She hopes to someday work in adult education, possibly in a business setting training employees, instructing at a college, or working in adult education at a community center.

2008 graduate Charlene Roberts said that her American National University education helped her regain her self-confidence and gave her the courage to continue learning.


DANVILLE, KENTUCKY
Pharmacy Technician Graduate Gained Hands-On Experience during Externship

Pharmacy Technician Graduate Gained Hands-On Experience during Externship

Chasity Grubbs, a graduate of the pharmacy technician program at the Danville, Kentucky Campus, recently completed an externship at Walgreen’s Pharmacy during the last term of her program. An externship is an important component of the pharmacy technician program for every student at American National University.

Chasity worked closely with Walgreen’s pharmacists, filling prescriptions and performing data entry. “I feel like I learned enough about the job … to feel comfortable with working as a [pharmacy technician],” said Chasity of the hands-on experience that she received during the externship. “I enjoyed the interaction with the customers and knowing that what I was doing was going to help someone.”

Chasity enrolled at American National University when she was working part-time and had extra time on her hands. “I decided to fill that time with something productive,” she said. “My goal was to learn a trade and that’s what I’ve done. I want to find a job where I can move up and not feel stuck in my position.”


LEXINGTON
Police Officer Addresses Students on How to Start a Career in Law Enforcement

Police Officer Addresses Students on How to Start a Career in Law Enforcement

On Wednesday, April 3rd, the Lexington Campus welcomed Officer Jervis Middleton from the Lexington Division of Police on campus to talk to students about the process of how to become a police officer and what it means to be a public safety professional. He took the opportunity to explain how many of the courses offered at National could be beneficial in his line of work. He also offered to take the students on a ride-along so they could see firsthand what it is like to be out in the field.

Many participating students were interested in Officer Middleton’s discussion and asked follow up questions, including Jennifer Cooper, a student in the business administration program, who said she enjoyed hearing about some of his experiences in his line of work. “I will be taking him up on his offer to do a ride-along in the near future.”

Officer Jervis Middleton is pictured addressing students at the Lexington Campus.


SOUTH BEND
Graduate Flourishes in Medical Billing & Coding Career with Physiotherapy Associates

Graduate Flourishes in Medical Billing & Coding Career with Physiotherapy Associates

Physiotherapy Associates was named a Distinguished Community Employer by the South Bend Campus for supporting American National University and its career training programs.

Physiotherapy Associates is celebrating its 2nd year in business as a provider of outpatient rehabilitation. Rina Young, a graduate of the campus’s medical billing and coding program, was hired as the office administrator when owner Patrick Christopher opened the business in 2011. Rina has grown with the business and now provides the patients/clients the best of service with scheduling, therapy questions, medical providers, insurance concerns, and more. Rina’s story was featured in the September 17, 2012 issue of the National News.

“The level of academic preparation from American National University was extremely good,” Mr. Christopher said of Rina. He added that Rina is an excellent employee, who has learned all aspects of the business and has definitely helped grow the business. “She is the business’ greatest asset.”

Mr. Patrick said that he would definitely be open to hiring additional graduates from American National University and even recommends it to his colleagues. “[The college] really appears to care about the success of its graduates.”

Campus director John Herman is pictured on the right presenting a plaque of appreciation to Physiotherapy owner Patrick Christopher (left) and graduate Rina Young.


AKRON AREA
Norm Katz-Difference Maker at the Akron Area Campus

Norm Katz-Difference Maker at the Akron Area Campus

WHO
Norm Katz at the Akron Area Campus

WHAT

  • Business/Accounting department chair
  • Instructor of all accounting courses and Business Math I & II

WHEN

  • American National University faculty member since 2007, when the Akron Area Campus opened
  • Worked in the manufacturing/forging industry for over 30 years with experience in supply chain management, on-site training, and teaching certification courses through professional organizations
  • Recipient of American National University’s Distinguished Teaching Award (Ohio-Indiana Division) in 2010

WHERE

  • Holds a Master of Business Administration degree from John Carroll University
  • Certified in production and inventory management

WHY
I admire and appreciate our students’ tenacity and persistence. Many of our students overcome great hardships to come to school and to complete their degree.

I like to challenge my students by giving them projects to work on and involving them in discussions to help them think outside the box. I bring in real life business situations and let them work out how they would handle them. I try to find balance between theory and business practice.

We have a very dedicated group of faculty that is focused on helping our students to get ahead- not just academically, but in their overall well-being.


PHOTO: Norm Katz is pictured on the left with students in his Accounting Principles I class (l to r) Cori Martter, Matt Dolinar, and Emily Dickerson.


DAYTON AREA
ISE Graduate Starts New Business Offering Web and Facebook Support

ISE Graduate Starts New Business Offering Web and Facebook Support

James Tucker, a graduate from the information systems engineering (ISE) degree program at the Dayton Area Campus, has taken a big step with his American National University education. He incorporated and started his own business call JT’s Simple Solutions.

Through his newly opened business, James offers website and social networking services including website creation, hosting, and administration and Facebook page creation and support. James helps small and mid-size clients develop and manage Facebook advertising at a very affordable rate.

Developing a business model around social media seemed natural to James. “Businesses are beginning to realize the power of social networks and my company is here to help them use those platforms,” he explained.

James liked the small class sizes at American National University, which allowed for close interaction with the faculty and fellow students. “Faculty, staff, and students at National encourage engagement. Students learn by being involved,” he said. “I’m prepared, and ready for the future.”

James was a model student as he excelled in the classroom. He will receive the 2013 M.A. Smythe Award for high academic achievement at the graduation ceremony on May 31st. For more information on JT’s Simple Solutions and what the company has to offer, visit www.jtssimplesolutions.com.

James Tucker finished the ISE degree program in August 2012 and will walk across the stage at the 2013 graduation ceremony on May 31.


COLUMBUS
Instructor Creates Opportunity for Students to Get Hands-On Experience

Instructor Creates Opportunity for Students to Get Hands-On Experience

It’s one thing to study something in the classroom, and it’s another thing to actually put your book learning to use. Students at American National University often have the opportunity to put their skills to use in a hands-on learning environment. On April 4, three students in the information systems engineering (ISE) degree program at the Columbus Campus experienced some hands-on learning by upgrading one of the campus’s computer labs.

Working with ISE Director Kelvin Webb, the students installed 14 new 64-bit computers. After getting the computers set up, they then helped configure them with the school’s network. Kelvin noted that the students’ efforts would also help them in their computer training as the changes added speed and versatility to the computers.

Student Twan Clark was excited about having the opportunity to put his coursework to good use. He said, “This is giving me hands-on experience, so that when I get a job, I’ll know what I’m doing.”

Instructor Kelvin Webb is pictured on the left (standing) assisting students (l to r) Charles Ross (sitting), Twan Clark, and Antwan Kimber as they install new computers.


 
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.