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September 09, 2013

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Graduate Impresses Physician and Is Hired For a New Medical Office

Graduate Impresses Physician and Is Hired For a New Medical Office

Chrissy Bowles, a graduate of the Danville Campus (Kentucky), was recently hired by Dr. Ronald Bibb, Jr. to work as a registered medical assistant at REBOS Recovery Center.  “She’s a one-man band,” said Dr. Bibb as he described the large variety of tasks that Chrissy performs in her work as an RMA.  She is currently his only full-time employee, and Dr. Bibb said that she’s always prepared to help in any way that’s needed in the office, from answering the phones and scheduling patients, to taking vitals and preparing his patients to meet with him.

When Dr. Bibb began his search for his first employee for the new office, he was impressed with Chrissy’s résumé, which she created while working with her campus career center director.   He also liked her eager response to his request for an interview.  “I think she was physically there… about 10 or 12 minutes later,” he recalled with a smile.

Dr. Bibb was familiar with the practice where Chrissy performed her externship during her program, and he felt that she’d gained great experience working there with an “excellent” group of physicians.  “If she can work there, she can work anywhere,” he explained.

While Chrissy’s credentials as an RMA were important to Dr. Bibb, her caring personality, which allows her to interact well with his patients, is equally vital to the success of the practice.

Chrissy loves everything about working at REBOS Recovery Center and she feels that the staff and faculty at American National University helped make her dream of working in the medical field a reality. “They were there to help you.  They weren’t there to say ‘You’re on your own.’  They were there to make sure that you succeeded in what you wanted,” she said.  “I’m a single mom of two kids.  Going to school and working full time-- it was hard.  But I made sure that I achieved the goal that I’d been going after for two years.”

A) Graduate Chrissy Bowles of the Danville Campus (Kentucky)
(B) Chrissy Bowles was hired by Dr. Ronald Bibb, Jr., to work as a registered medical assistant (RMA).


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Graduate Recalls Her Positive Experience at National College and Loves Her Career

Graduate Recalls Her Positive Experience at National College and Loves Her Career

Graduate Tiffany Dunnington of the Bristol Campus had done “lots of different things” before enrolling in college.  She had been a manager at a local restaurant, worked in retail management, and worked with disabled kids.  She had always wanted to go to college.   One day she called the campus and was treated well by everyone who spoke with her on the phone, she went for a personal interview, liked what she heard and decided to “go for it”.  She knew that she wanted to go to a small college and was really drawn to the campus because of the small classes and the reputation of students being able to get their education more quickly than at other schools. 

Tiffany enrolled in the medical assisting associate’s degree program because she knew she wanted to help others.  She realized that she liked to interact with the public. 

Tiffany said “I left with a better understanding of who I was.  [At first], I was really quiet and sat in the back of the classroom.” Director of healthcare education Sheri Jessee, who Tiffany calls her “hero,” had students “get in front of people and talk”!  As a result, “everyone knew me and it helped me to open up to people”.  Tiffany even served as president of the student activities council; worked with Cheryl Sapp, the campus career director to publish the newsletter called the Campus Bugle, and served as a work study in her department. She liked that the staff of the campus let her be involved and that provided her with encouragement.

English was her favorite part of her experience at National.  She “loved writing papers on medical topics” including doing the research. 

After Tiffany completed an externship at a local urgent care center, Cheryl sent her résumé to Southeastern Retina Associates.  Tiffany was contacted by the office, went in for her interview, and landed the job.  She is now a screening technologist and works in a fast-paced environment.  Tiffany opens the screening rooms, screens patients and prepares them for their eye exam, injections, etc.   What she likes best about her place of employment are her co-workers.  She said that everyone is so nice and they have an “open door policy” when it comes to asking questions.  She is very excited that she will also be able to work in the company’s other locations.  Regarding the future, Tiffany said, “I plan to stay here because there are so many opportunities”.  She would like to become a certified ophthalmic assistant (COA).   
Tiffany added that she learned so much at National and had a lot of different experiences.  She said that she realized how [much] everyone [there] cares about the students.  When asked about the advice that she would give to anyone thinking about going to college she said, “It is never too late.  Go for it!”

 (A)-Graduate Tiffany Dunnington is a screening technologist at Southeastern Retina Associates.
(B) Tiffany Dunnington (front) with her supervisor, Maxine Stonecipher.

Job Fair Provides Many Job Opportunities

Job Fair Provides Many Job Opportunities

The Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce sponsored a job fair at the Martinsville National Guard Armory on Wednesday, August 21st.  Forty local employers participated in the job fair with approximately 1,500 jobs available to be filled.  Martinsville Campus representatives Barbara Rakes, director of admissions and Annette Lawson, career center director, occupied a booth to greet prospective students and to meet employer representatives seeking qualified job candidates.  Sasha Tinsley, a medical office assistant graduate, said, “The job fair is an excellent opportunity to get your foot in the door to start a new career.” 

Another graduate, Senora Carter, who majored in accounting, was looking for employment within her field of study. “Attending the job fair is a great idea…the job fair offered employment opportunities along with the ability to obtain information to further a person’s education, Senora commented.  National College gave me a chance to become a better person by providing educational opportunities to me.”

Graduate Sasha Tinsley is pictured with director of admissions, Barbara Rakes. 

Guest Speaker Addresses the Topic of Credit Card Debt

Guest Speaker Addresses the Topic of Credit Card Debt

Students attending professional workshops at the Princeton Campus received a special presentation provided by guest speaker, Rhonda Bishop. She is a financial service specialist with Apprisen which is a non-profit comprehensive financial counseling and education company. Rhonda presented a short video offering valuable information about student loan management. The video featured students discussing the reality of the enormous credit card debt they acquired through their college years and were facing as graduation approached. It was found most undergraduates carry more than $3,000 in credit card debit. They learned that debit can prevent you from renting an apartment, from getting car loans, and from getting a job.

Apprisen provides counseling to assists students in developing a plan to reduce their credit card debt and improve their credit scores. Some of the advice included not always carrying credit cards with you, paying more than the minimum payment, and checking credit scores yearly. Students were also invited to have confidential consultations with Ms. Bishop.

Students showed great appreciation for the information.  Ms. Bishop has been invited to share her presentation with new students during orientation in September.

Guest speaker Rhonda Bishop speaks to students about credit card debt.

St Jude Children’s Research Hospital Hires Three Graduates

St Jude Children’s Research Hospital Hires Three Graduates

Bartlett Campus career center director Sammie Q. Hawkins presented National College’s Distinguished Community Employer Award to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee on Monday, July 29th.

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital received the honors for supporting National College students and graduates through employment.  “[National College of approached St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital last year and asked for the opportunity to provide information regarding the many educational programs and degree programs they offer with the goal of placing their graduates after an in-depth conversation regarding St. Jude’s need to [hire] patient care associate positions,” said Deidre Richardson Neal, manager of employment at St. Jude “To date, we’ve hired three graduates of the program, and our partnership continues to grow. Students from National College seem to be fully prepared to make a difference from their first day of employment. That embodies what St. Jude is all about—making a difference.”

Pictured in the front (l) to (r) are Deidre Richardson Neal, manager of employment at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Sammie Q. Hawkins, career center director, and Kimberly Dancey, nurse recruiter at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.  Many St. Jude employees joined in the photo.


Difference Maker - Dody Yost - Instructor

Difference Maker - Dody Yost - Instructor

Dody (Yost) Waggoner—Difference Maker at the Parkersburg Campus

Instructor of business, economics, math, and history courses

• National College instructor since 2012
• Has been teaching at the post-secondary level for 15 years

• Holds a bachelor’s degree in economics, a master’s degree in liberal learning, and a graduate certificate in American history
• In addition to teaching, she prepares taxes and owns a tutoring business

“Many students at National have experience that they are willing to share. I love that they are generally eager to help each other when they can. Most of them also have other commitments, but they are willing to work hard in class.”
“My greatest reward as an instructor is hearing students tell me they really got something out of my class or understand something they didn’t think they could learn.”
“I’ve seen students come into some of my classes absolutely sure that they wouldn’t be able to grasp the material because they had never cared for the subject and/or had never done well in the subject previously. I’ve seen them leave the class confident that they can do it.”


Instructor Dody Waggoner is a Difference Maker at the Parkersburg Campus. 




University Healthcare Center Hires Seven Surgical Technology Graduates

University Healthcare Center Hires Seven Surgical Technology Graduates

On Thursday, August 29th, Dr. David Zimmerman, campus director of the Harrisonburg Campus, presented the Distinguished Community Employer award to Ms. Hester Fletcher, operating room nursing educator at the University of Virginia Healthcare Center in Charlottesville.  Ms. Fletcher is responsible for hosting the campus’s surgical technology students during their externships in the operating rooms at the UVA hospital. Ms. Fletcher stated, “We have thoroughly enjoyed working with the staff and students of National College here at UVA and we are proud of all the wonderful employees we have gained from our relationship with National College.”  Student Sarah Greer, said, “Never in my life have I had such an awesome experience, working with so many amazing people who truly love what they do.  It is an honor to be here at UVA.”  Over the past year, the Harrisonburg Campus has sent ten surgical technology students to UVA for their clinical experiences and in turn, the hospital has hired seven of the students for full-time positions.

Pictured left to right are Ms. Sarah Greer, current SRG extern from Harrisonburg; Ms. Karen Sherback, Harrisonburg SRG program director, Ms. Deborah Meredith, Harrisonburg SRG clinical coordinator; Ms. Hester Fletcher; and Dr. David P. Zimmerman.  


Campus Open House Features "First Impressions" Seminar

Campus Open House Features

“I haven’t seen this much energy on campus for a while,” commented Marvin Cash, instructor at the Lynchburg Campus, following the Open House Event on Monday, August 26.   Several businesses teamed up for the highlight of the day - a “First Impressions” seminar which featured models, makeovers, and advice from the experts on how to dress professionally for job interviews.

 Amber Motley and Tabitha Serfass, managers of Men’s Wearhouse from Lynchburg and Roanoke, kicked off the seminar focusing on professional attire for men and women.  Amber, a graduate of the Roanoke Campus, invited the students and graduates to visit their locations for discounts and advice.  Amanda Thomas, Adrian Payne, and Lasheka Jones were selected as the “before” and “after” models.  For the seminar, Bill Baker, campus director and professional stylist, and Stephanie Anastasio, campus receptionist and Mary Kay consultant, provided styling and makeup makeovers.  The models then visited with Cabi representative, Sabrah Briers, who provided them with business attire for interviewing.  Following their red carpet runway debut, the models were “accessorized” by Macy’s representatives Jeanne McKeague and Tiffany Young.

The seminar was fun and focused on how that first impression could impact the outcome of that important interview.  A special ceremony followed to recognize the Dean’s List recipients and special student volunteers in the Ambassador Club.  Michelle Andrews, who holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration- management , assisted Bill and Marvin in presenting the certificates to the Dean’s List Students. 

The Lynchburg Campus thanks the special guests, alumni, visitors and businesses, who made the 2013 Open House a success.

Students selected as the "before" and "after" models for the "First Impressions" seminar are (l) to (r): Amanda Thomas, Lasheka Jones, and Adrian Payne.

Job Fair Brings Employers to Campus to Talk with Students about Career Opportunities

Job Fair Brings Employers to Campus to Talk with Students about Career Opportunities

Connecting with employers can sometimes be difficult for those conducting a job search, but a recent job fair, held at the Louisville Campus on Wednesday, September 4th, brought employers to campus and made them accessible to American National University students, graduates, and the public. 

Rodney Cox,  a veteran who is funding his business administration-management degree through the Veterans Administration’s Vocational Rehabilitation program, was one of the students who participated in the job fair which included representatives from companies such as the Geek Squad, Waffle House, Lowe’s, Aaron’s, Camber Corporation, and Employment Express.   He said that by visiting the job fair, he hoped to “lay a foundation and…set myself up for success.” 

Business administration-management student Rashida Hughes, who will be completing her bachelor’s degree in early 2014, welcomed the opportunity to talk with employers about management positions with their companies.

“It’s giving me more motivation to do something different, outside the box,” she said after visiting the job fair booths.

Brett Bastin, area people director for Waffle House, talked with several business administration-management students during the job fair, and said that they are typically a good fit for the company’s management trainee program.  “We are here to find good quality candidates who are looking to get into management and pursue a career with Waffle House,” said Mr. Bastin.  “We have a unique, home-grown culture, so we need individuals who are capable and have the capacity to come in and be successful unit managers, but who also possess the talents and drive to move up and do more within the company.”

Mr. Bastin encourages American National University graduates and students to visit the Waffle House website at to apply or to learn more about the management trainee positions that are available with the company.

(A)Business administration-accounting student Patricia Pierce is pictured talking with Robert Price from Express Employment Professionals during the Louisville Campus Job Fair. 

(B)-Business administration-management student Rashida Hughes is shown talking with Brett Bastin, area people director for Waffle House.

Future Business Leaders of America Chapter Begins at Richmond Campus

Future Business Leaders of America Chapter Begins at Richmond Campus

On Thursday, July 18th,  eight students along with Janet Lynn Bellamy, computer science department chair, met to form a chapter of FBLA-PBL (Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda) at the Richmond Campus.

Today’s highly competitive business environment requires business savvy, leadership skills and technical knowledge to be successful. The purpose of FBLA-PBL is to train future business leaders to become contributing members of society. Some of the benefits of being a member are development of leadership and training skills, contacts made through networking, and opportunities to apply their knowledge through business-related activities. 

“Phi Beta Lambda has inspired me to reach out to the community more often. I am excited to be offered a program that I can put my skills in accounting to use as one of [the two] treasurers for the club,” said Kattie Smith, a business accounting and management student.  “This program offers all American National University students a great opportunity to reach out to the community, build our confidence in our abilities, and make us the business leaders of tomorrow.”   

Students of the Richmond Campus who met to for a FBLA chapter are pictured (l) to (r): Kattie Smith, Courtney Burns, Cheryl Fruzzetti, Linda Dominguez, Angel Powell, Ashleigh Pugh, Ms. Bellamy,  Michael Maness, Elizabeth McIntosh, Rebekah Watts.

KACCS Legislator of the Year Award

KACCS Legislator of the Year Award

Kentucky State Representative Dennis Horlander has been named 2013 Legislator of the Year by the Kentucky Association of Career Colleges and Schools (KACCS) due to his strong support of career and technical education.  Representative Horlander, who serves House District 40 which includes the National College Louisville Campus, was presented the award during KACCS’ annual conference which was recently held in Louisville.

Representative Horlander has served in the General Assembly since 1996.  He is currently Co-Chair of the Government Contract Review Committee, Vice-Chair of the Budget Review Subcommittee and a member of the Economic Development, Labor and Industry, Banking and Insurance, and Licensing and Occupation Committees. 

Representative Horlander was instrumental in the development and passage of House Bill 308 in the 2012 General Assembly, the legislation which created the Commission on Proprietary Education.  The commission is responsible for licensing and regulating all proprietary schools in Kentucky, other than those that offer a four year bachelor’s degree.

“Career colleges play an important role in meeting the educational needs for many residents in our community,” said Representative Horlander.  “I am honored to receive this award and I appreciate and value the hands-on approach to education that career colleges provide to make sure students obtain the skills they need to become job-ready.”

Kentucky State Representative Dennis Horlander was named 2013 Legislator of the Year by the Kentucky Association of Career Colleges and Schools (KACCS). 

Student Activities Council Provides Students with Numerous Opportunities

Student Activities Council Provides Students with Numerous Opportunities

The Student Activities Council (SAC) at the Indianapolis Campus strives to make sure there is always something exciting happening on campus. As a SAC member, students have numerous opportunities to develop leadership and organizational skills.  In addition, friendships are formed and students become more involved in campus.  SAC strives to improve the quality of student life at American National University and in return, members learn, lead, and grow. Gerald Whitaker said, “I joined SAC to be a bigger part of the school. I like building relationships with the students as well as the faculty.”

SAC activities are funded through the student activities fee that every student pays, so most of them are free to students. SAC strives to spend the money wisely, so they utilize volunteer SAC members to make those decisions. The SAC members were honored with a certificate of appreciation for their outstanding performance and lasting contribution to the Student Activity Council. The members were excited to be recognized for their hard work and dedication.

In September, SAC is planning a fundraising event to raise money for 4 Paws for Ability, a non-profit company specializing in breeding and training service dogs for children with special needs. The committee was informed of this organization through a student who approached SAC about a friend who is raising money for a service dog for her son who suffers from multiple regressive disorders. SAC is also anticipating a Halloween event on campus.

(L to R): Student Activities Council Members-Andrea Duncan, Casey Byrd, Gerald Whitaker, Francine Holland.



International Student Chooses ANU to Jump Start Marketing Career

International Student Chooses ANU to Jump Start Marketing Career

Parthvi Patel came to the United States from India on Christmas day in 2007 with plans of improving her opportunities for higher education. She attended several universities around the U.S., studying accounting and marketing, and eventually earned a Master of Business Administration degree with a concentration in marketing and research.

She was then granted a one-year work permit from the U.S. government and began working as a business analyst for an IT company in New Jersey. She enjoyed the job, but her dream was to find employment in the marketing field. However, she soon realized that it would be difficult to get a job in marketing without a technological background. “Now most companies use technology and e-business,” Parthvi says. “It’s a part of marketing…build up your own website, start marketing, launch your product.” She also cites the increase in mobile marketing with apps as a new way technology and marketing have begun to intersect.

So when Parthvi and her husband moved to Roanoke last year, they toured American National University’s Roanoke Valley Campus and both decided to enroll. Parthvi chose to enroll in the information systems engineering (ISE) associate’s degree program, and her husband enrolled in the MBA program.

They both agree that it was the caring and polite staff that convinced them that this was the school for them. “They treat each and every student equally,” Parthvi says. She is particularly grateful to the director of admissions, Ron Smith, who helped her decide on an education path that would lead her to her career goals; and MBA Chair Annette Chamberlain, who has been a source of comfort and advice for Parthvi and her husband.

Parthvi will graduate from the ISE program next year and is confident that the technology skills she is gaining at ANU will help her in attaining her dream career. Her next goal is to earn a PhD in marketing before pursuing employment in the field.  “You have to get as much knowledge as you can get in your life,” she says. “It isn’t worthless; it is worth it in the future to have an idea about marketing, technology, business, and management.”

Student Parthi Patel has enrolled in the ISE associate’s degree program to make her dream of working in the marketing field a reality.

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.