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October 13, 2014

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Graduate Has a Bright Future with a Well-Known Company

Graduate Has a Bright Future with a Well-Known Company

Many people recognize the name Aramark - a global company that handles food services, facilities management, and provides uniforms for industries that impact our day to day lives. With a strong presence in more than 22 countries around the world, Aramark services the industries we are familiar with such as the businesses where we work, the schools our children attend, and the hospitals in our community.  Aramark even serves the athletes at the Olympics.  You can imagine that running a business that large takes a lot of work and has many components behind its success -- including a robust accounting department.  For Sonya Angus, a recent graduate of National College’s Madison Campus - working as an accounting clerk at Aramark means that she gets to be a part of that success.

When Sonya came to National two years after graduating high school, she knew she wanted a career in accounting "because I knew I was good at math," she said simply, "and [accounting] is a great field."  With a quieter personality, Sonya chose National because of the small classes and the one-on-one connection with the teacher. "I knew I would learn better that way instead of being a number," she said - crediting her accounting instructor, Tracy Ross, for making a lasting impact on her school experience.  "If we had a question - she always made sure she did her best to answer," Sonya said. 

Not only did Sonya pick up real-world experience from her instructor that she would later apply to her job, she also shared what she learned as a work study by tutoring her fellow students as well as middle school students at Madison Middle School.  Working diligently at her studies, she graduated in two years and completed her externship at the Nashville Business Incubation Center - a business dedicated to offering support to start-up small businesses.  She worked in their accounting department, creating invoices and conducting basic billing transactions that helped her build first-hand experience that she would transfer to her work at Aramark.

When she graduated and finished her externship,  career center director Adella Harris told Sonya about an upcoming career fair, and Sonya took her advice.  She dressed in interview attire and arrived early to the event.  "Aramark was just opening the building," Sonya said and it just so happened that they had planned to do on-the-spot interviews that morning and she was one of the first interviewees.  After the interview, her interviewer told her that she was "perfect for the job," and that they would be in contact with her over the next few weeks. Sonya started working as an accounting clerk in Aramark's Nashville branch very soon.

"I'm actually planning on starting this year for a bachelor's," said Sonya.  "I'm content with where I'm at right now," Sonya said about her job, although she looks forward to the expansive room there is to grow in a company as large and well-established as Aramark. 

Graduate Sonya Angus interviewed for a position at the Madison Campus career fair and was offered the job.  She is now an accounting clerk with Aramark in Nashville. 

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National College Graduates Receive Senatorial Citations

National College Graduates Receive Senatorial Citations

American National University graduates Kayla Hadden and Natasha Jackson recently received senatorial citations from Kentucky State Senator John Schickel (R), Senate District 11, in recognition of their educational and career achievements.  The presentations were made on Tuesday, September 23rd during the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Florence Campus’s new location at 8095 Connector Drive.

Kayla, who earned an associate’s degree in accounting at American National University in 2014, is working as the operating manager of her husband’s business, Hadden Brother’s LLC Painting and Property Maintenance.  Senator Schickel commended her for using her degree to support her husband and her children, who were by her side for the presentation. “These are the things that the career college is about,” Senator Schickel said.

Following the ceremony, Kayla said that she was proud to have been selected to receive the citation, and that she had worked hard to earn her degree to help make her family’s business successful.  “Our business has taken off more than I could ever imagine, so…for right now, I’m just going to keep making sure that the business is taken care of,” she said of her plans for the future.

Natasha, who is working as a CNA at St. Elizabeth Hospital, is a U.S. Amy veteran and 2008 graduate of the campus’s surgical technology program.  She recently returned to American National University to take advantage of the free refresher courses that are available to graduates to help her prepare to sit for the certified surgical technologist exam.

Senator Schickel, noted that Jackson was unable to attend the ceremony due to her dedication to her job. “You know why she can’t be here today folks?  Because she’s at work.  Isn’t that wonderful?” Senator Schickel said. “I know that’s one thing that American National University teaches…is a good work ethic.  You can’t take off every day just because you want to.  You need to show up and you need to be at work.  So Natasha showed up today.”

Natasha later accepted the citation from Amy Brown, campus director, and Carolyn Neinaber, director of the surgical technology program, during a private ceremony at the campus.

A-Kayla Hadden, a business administration-accounting graduate from the Florence Campus, is shown accepting her senatorial citation from State Senator John Schickel.

B-Florence Campus surgical technology graduate Natasha Jackson (center) is shown accepting her senatorial citation from Amy Brown (left), campus director, and Carolyn Nienaber (right), director of the surgical technology program.

IT Students Pass First Half of CompTIA A+ Exams

IT Students Pass First Half of CompTIA A+ Exams

Lynchburg Campus IT Students Justin Spencer and Joseph Short came from two different worlds.  Joseph worked in radio and decided to go to college for a new career.   He chose the Network Administration program because he’s always been interested in computers.  “I’ve broken a few in my day and wanted to know how to fix them,” he said.  Justin worked in retail and decided to go to college to learn more about computers.  He entered the Software Development program because “Today’s world is all computer-oriented and I love working with computers,” he said.

Justin and Joseph ended up in the same world when they enrolled at American National University.  Justin chose ANU because of the “hands-on, small classes and awesome people.”  Joseph said, “I wanted a career-oriented school that would fast track my new direction,” as why he chose ANU. 

They have had extremely supportive family members and are pleased with the support they are receiving at ANU.   “The people here are just down to earth and invested in our success,”said Justin.  “The students, teachers and support staff are top notch,” saidys Joseph.  When asked how ANU has prepared them for the workforce, “Real world experience, letting me know what to expect,” said Justin.  “With practical experience and [instructors] who are in the industry, ANU is paving the way for my future success,” said Joseph.  Justin says that Pamela Hooper, Information Technology Instructor for the Lynchburg Campus, has made a positive impact on him.  IT Instructor Dylan March “made a great first impression,” said Joseph.

“Both Justin and Joseph are excellent students.  They put in many hours of study preparing for the CompTIA A+ 220-801 exam, and their hard work paid off.  I’m sure they will not have any trouble passing the second exam,” said IT Instructor Pamela Hooper. 

What advice would they give someone thinking about going back to school? Joseph says, “The first step is scary, but you won’t regret it.”  From Justin, “Don’t overthink it, just dive in and go for the gold!”

A-Justin Spencer’s affinity for computers led to his desire to obtain a degree in information technology.  He has already completed his CompTIA A+ certification.

B-Joseph Short is a former radio station employee who wanted a change.  He is now pursuing a degree in information technology and had just received his CompTIA A+ certification.  


Medical Assisting Class Participates in a CPR Seminar

Medical Assisting Class Participates in a CPR Seminar

Students in Larry Liggan’s medical assisting class at the Charlottesville Campus recently participated in a CPR seminar conducted by AHA instructor Tammy Tomanek.  Students were instructed on how to react to life threatening situations using chest compression techniques, the Heimlich maneuver, and how to modify CPR when there is more than one person present.  Students were then given the opportunity to demonstrate their new skills on a manikin. 

Student Kara Booker said this is a great certification to have, so in an emergency you know the proper way to do CPR.  The students now have more training in the profession in which they will be entering.  Medical assisting students must have provider professional level CPR as this is the required technical standard to be qualified for externships.

Pictured above in the left-side photo are (left to right standing):  Jenna Bresnahan, Jennifer Taylor, AHA Instructor Tammy Tomanek, and Instructor Larry Liggan.  Sitting left to right in front are Carrie Day, with Donna Davis at the manikin.

Distinguished Community Employer Award Presented to University Radiology

Distinguished Community Employer Award Presented to University Radiology

University Radiology in Knoxville was recently honored with the Distinguished Community Employer award for the Knoxville Campus and it was specifically presented to the Patient Services Department.  The company has been practicing high quality radiology and nuclear medicine services since 1984.  They have more than 28 radiologists comprised of sub-specialized, fellowship trained physicians in every imaging modality. 

Nena Forsman, revenue cycle manger, oversees the patient services department which maintains patient records.  She accepted two medical billing and coding upcoming graduates who were in search of externships and an additional student the following term.  Two of the three students were offered positions prior to completing their externships.  Ms. Forsman said, “We are very pleased with the students of National College.  They came here with the necessary set of skills that we require.  We will always be happy to work with more students.”

“The [instructors] and career center director helped me prepare for my first externship and I was very excited to be hired here,” said graduate Marie Blair.  “I love it here and really like the family environment.  I have learned a lot about medical insurance and billing.” 

“I am so happy I decided to go to National,” said graduate Melissa Harris.  “I love my new job and I learn something new every day.”

Pictured left to right graduate Marie Blair; Nena Forsman, recycle revenue manager of University Radiology (center); graduate Melissa Harris (right).  Marie and Melissa are employed by University Radiology.

Student Looks Forward to an Enjoyable Career in the Business World

Student Looks Forward to an Enjoyable Career in the Business World

Nicole Brooks, a student at the Youngstown Campus, previously attended Youngstown State University as an early childhood education major for two years.  She wasn’t happy there and her cousin had graduated from the Youngstown Campus.  She found the campus on the internet which led to a personal visit and she never looked back again.

She chose the business administration-management program because she has always worked in management at her local Sam’s Club, Target, and Famous Footwear.  Right now she is working for the local newspaper, The Vindicator, as an independent contractor, a position that she has held for eight years.  She manages all of the media outlet’s accounts and works the midnight shift in order to be able to take classes during the day and care for her daughter.

Nicole is confident that because of the degree that she is about to complete, she will be able to find a career in management, social work, or have the knowledge to own a business.  She said that she will make sure that it is something that she enjoys. 

Student Nicole Brooks will finish her business administration-management degree at the end of the year.  She previously attended Youngstown State University.  

Becoming MBA Stars

Becoming MBA Stars

It was a night full of stars both in the sky and in the MBA classroom in late September at the Roanoke Valley Campus.  The MBA students found themselves in a new type of classroom – the outdoors under a starry sky enjoying a team building retreat!  Students visited the Mill Mountain Star in the city of Roanoke, VA, a landmark that has stood for more than 60 years.  Since its construction on the Mill Mountain site in 1949, the man-made illuminated star has been shining brightly over the Roanoke Valley and gives Roanoke its nickname the “Star City.”  The landmark is so attractive to tourists that the site has a “star” cam. To view this, visit:

The MBA students enjoyed a picnic and then began the learning agenda for the evening; the business of learning how to become “stars” in their careers.  The retreat included three team building modules.  Topics included effective listening, non-verbal communication, and conflict resolution.  Students shared experiences and acted out case scenarios.   MBA graduate Clay Hodges assisted with the team building event and told the students: “Becoming “stars” isn’t difficult but it takes time and dedication to learn the necessary skills to “shine” among co-workers and within your organization.”

The Mill Mountain Star and the American National University MBA students are working hard to create a brighter community in the “Star City” of Roanoke.  The students continue to engage in team building events that will enhance their business knowledge. 

The MBA students at the Roanoke Valley Campus moved their classroom to the Mill Mountain Star in Roanoke, VA for one night.

Graduate Finds Career Success with the National College Advantage

Graduate Finds Career Success with the National College Advantage

There are many things that Angie Flynn, a graduate of the Danville, Kentucky Campus, loves about her job working as a registered medical assistant at Ear, Nose and Throat of Central Kentucky. “I love the people here.  I love the atmosphere.  I love the hours.  I love that it’s so close to home,” she said.

Angie has a variety of duties at ENT of Central Kentucky, including giving allergy shots and triaging and rooming patients.  “One of my favorite parts is that they do minor surgeries and I get to assist with those,” she said. “I get to see some really neat things.”  She’ll also be trained in the near future to conduct allergy testing.

Angie was hired by ENT of Central Kentucky just before graduating from American National University when the practice contacted Stephanie Slone, the director of health care education at the campus, to ask her to refer some upcoming graduates for the opening in their office.  “They called me…on a Thursday and I started on Monday,” Angie recalled of being hired for the job.

The campus’s relationship with local employers has been just one of the many benefits of being a student at American National University that helped Angie find career success.  Small class sizes, one-on-one attention from her instructors, an externship at Frankfort Urgent Care, and her certification as a Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) were all also invaluable to her as she entered the job market.

“I learned a lot and I’m happy with what I did learn.  It got me a job that I love that’s a lot better than where I was,” said Angie who previously worked as a bank teller.  “I feel more comfortable with my home life with my finances, and I would have never had this opportunity [without my degree].”

A-Angie Flynn was hired as a registered medical assistant by ENT of Central Kentucky after they contacted the Danville, Kentucky Campus to provide them with candidates for the position.

B-Assisting with minor surgical procedures is one of Angie Flynn's favorite parts of her job at ENT of Central Kentucky.

Distinguished Community Employer Award Presented to Baptist Health-Richmond

Distinguished Community Employer Award Presented to Baptist Health-Richmond

Baptist Health of Richmond, Kentucky is the latest recipient of the Lexington Campus’s Distinguished Community Employer award.  The award is presented to employers who not only hire American National University graduates but may also provide externship opportunities where applicable.  Our award recipient for this term certainly exemplifies and exceeds the qualities we seek when we finalize the selection process for this award.

The award was presented to Amy Masters, RN.  She is the surgical services educator for the surgical services department at Baptist Health in Richmond.  A vital part of Amy’s responsibilities involve the evaluation and orientation of employees in her department.  “It is my responsibility to make certain all employees are trained, proficient, and job ready,” said Ms. Masters.  “We also have students on site and I have to make absolutely certain they have sufficient skills to maintain the highest standards of patient safety and care.”

Baptist Health currently employs three American National University surgical technology graduates who also completed externships there.  “Our affiliation with National goes back seven years and it has always been a positive experience,” said Ms. Masters.  “Since beginning my career with Baptist Health I have been extremely impressed with your surgical students and graduates. Yes, they are well-trained, very professional and knowledgeable…but they exude a rare level of confidence from day-one. Their level of confidence comes not from a text book, but from your excellent surgical instructors who mold them into the competent professionals we see time and again from your college.  We trust them and employ them and we will continue to do so because they know their craft and they are able to function at a very high level from day one.”

Pictured (l) to (r): Jennifer Schnelle, instructor at the Lexington Campus, Cheryl Howell, career center director,  Amy Masters, registered nurse at Baptist Hospital, and  Regina Shumard, surgical technology director at the Lexington Campus. 

Students Receive Valuable Interview Preparation

Students Receive Valuable Interview Preparation

Cynthia Hansel, career center director at the Richmond Campus, recently conducted a workshop on interviewing skills.  During the workshop, students learned about how to dress for success, and how to handle all types of interviews—phone, group, and one-on-one.

Cynthia gave the workshop participants examples of interview questions and answers, and she discussed the best types of questions to ask an employer.  She also encouraged the students not to forget the important step that they should take after an interview—sending a thank you letter or card.

Sarah Young, a medical assisting student, said that she feels that the workshop will definitely help her with her job search. “I feel I will be better equipped for an interview because of the workshop,” she said. “I found it very informative and helpful, especially the hand-out of interview questions that I will be able to use in preparing for interviews so that I won’t be so nervous.”

A-Medical assisting student Sarah Young  (left) is shown with career center director Cynthia Hansel (right) following the workshop on job interviewing skills.

B-Students gathered with career center director Cynthia Hansel (third from right) following the workshop on job interviewing skills that was held at the Richmond Campus.

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.