In just a few days, we’ll celebrate our very first official graduation for the Bay City campus of Career Quest Learning Centers. And we couldn’t be prouder or more excited for our graduates. They all worked really hard during their programs and most of them are already working out in the real world, improving their careers and their lives!
Want to Meet a Few?
Devynn always wanted to be a Medical Assistant, but if Career Quest hadn’t opened its Bay City doors in 2018, she might not have taken that very important first step in her healthcare career. Her mother started working at the school and when Devynn stopped by to check it out, she was hooked. She’s a member of the very first Bay City graduating class.
“I couldn’t come up with a complaint if I had to about Career Quest. It was all great,” says Devynn. “All of the staff were awesome. Someone was always there to make sure you stayed at it and did your work. My mom was my biggest supporter throughout the whole program but there were so many other people at Career Quest who were great. Val was definitely my favorite teacher. She was my instructor almost the entire time I was there and she was amazing.”
Valaree Johnson isn’t just a well-respected instructor in the Medical Assistant program at Career Quest; she also got the Bay City chapter of our Student Association up and running. That may be another reason Devynn feels so connected to Val. Devynn was the president!
“It was a great experience,” says Devynn. “We did so many activities: bake sales, garage sales. We helped at a homeless shelter and with wildlife. We had a lot of projects and I got the students involved. I was very, very shy before I started at Career Quest. But that’s kind of gone now,” laughs Devynn. “Career Quest got that right out of me.”
Today, Devynn works as a Medical Assistant at McLaren Occupational Health & Convenient Care. She says she loves the hands-on tasks she performs on the clinical side of things but also enjoys the clerical side.
“It’s interesting every day. You never know what’s coming in the door,” says Devynn. “I’m learning new things every day. I want to get as much experience as an MA as I can. I’m also continuing on to get my Associate degree in Medical Office Administration. I’m leaving my options open for the future.”
Dominique got hired even before she graduated! Through her own initiative, she got her foot in the door to a great healthcare career. When it was time for an externship, she stepped up and found one.
“I didn’t even know if they took externs,” says Dominique. “So I asked.”
And when it came time for a job? Same approach: “Can I interview with you?”
She now works at a family practice at Bangor Medical Center.
“I love helping people,” says Dominique. “I room patients, draw blood, help with procedures, do wound care, take X-rays. And the only thing I didn’t learn in school was X-rays.”
Dominique was already in healthcare, but she was tired of working in nursing homes as a certified nurse’s aide. She wanted something more.
“Once Career Quest came to Bay City, I jumped on board!”
According to Dominque, it was Kelli Revard who really made the difference in her success in the Medical Assistant program.
“Everyone has different ways of teaching, but Miss Kelli would go above and beyond,” says Dominique. “I liked her teaching methods. She created these phlebotomy bracelets and key chains with colored beads so we would know the order for blood draws. She printed off extra materials. If you didn’t understand something, she was quick to find a way to help you get it. She was very eager to help.”
Dominique says she learned a lot at school and she also got involved with the Student Association. She liked “their overall goal to help the community.” And she says that Career Quest was a great experience. It was hard work, especially since Dominque was juggling work and a life that includes a fiancé, three daughters and four stepsons! But it was all worth it.
“If someone asked me, I’d encourage them to go to Career Quest,” says Dominique.
Bethany can truly say that Career Quest changed her life. Working as a caregiver and pulling 12-hour shifts at a factory, she knew she needed to make a significant change. The factory work was especially tedious; she did the “same exact thing over and over and over again.”
Now she’s working regular hours, at Riverview Medical Associates, using “everything that we learned in school.” Bethany says her 8 to 5 shift flies by. She performs a variety of clinical tasks for the six-physician family practice, serving patients from birth to death.
“It can be pretty hectic,” says Bethany. “You’re constantly on the go. But it really makes the day go by fast.”
Bethany says her training at Career Quest and her externship at McLaren set her up for success. And she must be making a good impression; she’s already gotten promoted from part-time to full-time!
A graduate of the second Bay City class, Bethany says that she hadn’t planned on attending a career school, didn’t live anywhere near Bay City; she’s from Grand Rapids. But when she moved into the area last May, she saw an ad on Facebook and gave it some thought. The idea that she could improve her life by taking a program that she could complete in less than nine months was more than a little appealing.
“It was a last-minute decision, but the fact that it was such a short program stuck with me,” says Bethany, “and it was definitely worth it. The first day I felt really nervous and uncomfortable, but within the first week, I was friends with everyone. The teachers were really supportive. Kelly Rivard and Val. They were great. Val really was the one who pushed me to finish.”
Would she recommend the Medical Assistant Program at Career Quest? Absolutely!
“I have actually told numerous people to go do it,” says Bethany, “and I’ve had friends sign up. I tell them, ‘it’s a short program. There’s supportive staff. And you’re spending every day with these people so it’s almost like they become like your family.’”
Bethany also can’t wait for the formal graduation ceremony. Her mother is coming from Grand Rapids to see her girl graduate on Friday, May 24th at 6:00 p.m., at the DoubleTree Hotel, 1 Wenonah Park Place, Bay City.
What would it be like for you to cross the stage and accept your Medical Assistant certificate? Find out whether or not Career Quest Learning Centers is right for you. In addition to Medical Assistant and other healthcare programs, we offer career training programs in Business, IT, Child Care Assistant, and HVAC-R. Fill out the form and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.