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Graduate Turns Progressive Learning into Career Advancement



Feb 11, 2014

Rachel Abell has found a career with stability and growth potential working as a health information specialist with Conifer Health Solutions where she was hired after progressing through complementary programs at the Louisville Campus.  She earned diplomas in the pharmacy technician and medical billing and coding programs, then stepped up and carried those credits into an associate’s degree in health information technology, and stepped up once more as she continues her education in the health care management/information systems bachelor’s degree program.

As an active volunteer in her community, most recently serving as the president of her local little league, Rachel believes that if you want to see change occur, you take action, so it isn’t surprising that when she wanted a brighter future for herself and her son, she came to American National University to take the steps necessary to make her goal a reality.

“I don’t think that I had a life before National, because I was all over the place.  I was just a wanderer.  I didn’t have any goals.  There was no direction,” recalled Rachel.  “Once I had my child, everything changed.  It all had a meaning.  The very next step after my child was American National University.”

Rachel said that she found support and real-world knowledge through her instructors at the Louisville Campus, naming Judy McDonough and Elizabeth Head as two who were most influential on her career.  “She helped me study, anything that I ever needed…she was that person to talk to,” she said of Elizabeth.  “She is a wonderful woman.”

After conducting an externship during her program, Rachel worked closely with the campus career center director who connected her with the human resources department at Jewish Hospital where she now works under contract with Conifer. 

She feels that her employer offers plenty of room for advancement in her career.  “Conifer has opportunities all over the country,” she explained, adding that she feels that earning her bachelor’s degree, with a broader focus on technology, will bring her even more job security.  “Knowing how to operate the systems is one thing, but actually being able to put them together and set them up…there’s always going to be a demand for that.”

In addition, Rachel said that learning something new every day keeps her happy and fulfilled.  “I love to learn,” she said.  “I do it to make me smile, because if I’m not smiling, I can’t make anybody else smile.”

Graduate Rachel Abell is working as a health information specialist for Conifer Health Solutions and she has returned to the Louisville Campus to continue her education in the health care management/information systems program.

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tags: KY-Louisville Medical: Health Care Management Information Systems - Bachelor's Degree (HCMIS)