Vennessa Nogueras says her children couldn’t be prouder of their mom as she puts on her uniform every day and heads to work in a doctor’s office. “I tell them, do you know Hallie the Hippo who helps Doc McStuffins? That’s what mommy does!”
Except Vennessa isn’t assisting an imaginary doctor and her patients aren’t stuffed animals. They’re the real deal! Vennessa works as a Medical Assistant for McLaren Health Care. And she says she wouldn’t be doing a job she loves if it weren’t for Career Quest Learning Centers.
“McLaren came to Quest,” says Vennessa “and I happened to be one of the students they picked right from there for an externship.”
She completed her externship on October 4th and on November 12th she started her job. It was that quick—from an unpaid externship to a paid career! And Vennessa says she uses everything she learned at Career Quest on the job now. She helps orient patients, takes vitals, does blood work, takes urine cultures, and helps the doctor.
“I absolutely love it,” says Vennessa. “I work in family practice and I get to see infants when they’re fresh out of the hospital. The people are great. The doctor is great. I love everything I do. I wake up every day, excited to go to work. Never in a million years did I think I’d be working for such a big company, that I’d become something more than the average person working in a factory.”
Factory work was taking a toll on Vennessa. She says she was working 12-hour days, seven days a week. She had little time for her three kids and was either sleeping when she wasn’t working, or awake and agitated because she was so tired all the time.
“Now, I get to spend more time with my kids and they’re super ecstatic to say mommy works at the doctor’s office,” says Vennessa. She works “normal hours” (8-5) and says “my life has definitely taken a turn for the best.”
Vennessa graduated from the Career Quest Learning Centers Medical Assistant Program in Lansing and says “the teachers were super, super helpful. I don’t feel like I could have had a better support team than what I had at Career Quest. They care about the students and how they’re doing outside of school. They just have all the support that you need there. If you’re ever wondering or questioning what you’re doing, they’re there for you. My best teacher was Charlene Blanchard. She just pushes you to succeed. She doesn’t take excuses. She was my rock during school. Everyone was just great. Even my classmates were great.”
“If I can recommend Career Quest to anybody, I do,” says Vennessa. “I tell them, ‘It starts with you. Make sure you go. Make sure you do the work.’”
And for Vennessa, all that hard work paid off.
“I never knew I’d have people be so proud of me—people in and out of Career Quest,” says Vennessa. “I posted a picture of my McLaren badge and 140 people liked it!”
If you want a career you can be proud of, take a look at all the healthcare programs offered at Career Quest Learning Centers. Could one of them change your life?