Program: Medical Assistant
My name is Giovanna Paiva and I graduated from Healthcare Training Institute as a medical assistant technician. As soon as I graduated high school I decided to focus mainly on working, since I had no idea of what I wanted to do. I wasn’t convinced that college was for me, not only because of the length of time but also the financial investment. Knowing that I wouldn’t qualify for financial aid and couldn’t afford any loans made my decision even harder.
I wasn’t sure of where to turn or what to do so I just got a job in retail, like most high school grads do. I was pretty comfortable there so I didn’t feel the need to further my education. I spent two whole years working. And then due to changes in management I realized I couldn’t stay where I was forever.
The new boss was mean and rude, demeaning and even disrespectful. So I decided I was going to enroll in school and try to get a career so I could leave the job where I was. Then a friend told me about HTI, and immediately after that I started seeing the billboards everywhere. It was almost a sign, so I did not wait any longer; I enrolled in the medical assistant program.
My admissions rep was amazing. She advised me on what would be the best path and was honest with me. I got a tour of the school and was automatically convinced this was the right choice for me.
I didn’t have any background in the medical field so sometimes I did feel lost during class. So I would come Fridays and Saturdays for extra assistance – the doors of HTI were always open.
My instructors guided me through every step of the course. Dr. Eze and Dr. Ali were wonderful instructors and they inspired and motivated me to come every day ready to learn.
I had to work full time in order to pay for school; since I couldn’t get any financial aid and definitely did not want any loans. I think that was the hardest thing I ever had to do. I worked full time, rushed home, put on scrubs and rushed to school at night. Now, this sounds like a normal student’s life. I was working a minimum wage job, with a manager who was extremely mean and on top of everything- I hated my job. I am pretty sure leaving retail and getting a job in the medical field was my biggest motivation.
I began working harder, getting over time in order to pay for my classes faster, used up all my savings and even got a second job on the weekends to make ends meet. It was a lot of hard work- minimum time to myself, many sacrifices and to add to the whole mix I depended on public transportation. After my full day of work and school at night I sometimes had to wait about an hour for the bus.
Still, I managed to get to school on time, not miss class and I always made an extra effort to learn. Being in school allowed me to develop many friendships that I still value today. My classmates were all in very similar situations as me; working during the day then coming school at night, some had kids. We were all there working towards a common goal, to have a career. That was one of my biggest support systems. Also Joy – she always had a word of encouragement and truly the patience of a saint since I always had questions for her. She would always offer me her assistance.
Career Services was awesome! They helped me so much! Paula and Erik gave a seminar of what to do and what not to do during interviews. They sent me job leads of where to apply and also helped me by doing mock interviews so I could practice. They worked on my resume and even after I got a job, they continued to update it for me.
I went on a couple interviews before I landed my current job. I work at a pulmonologist doctor’s office which I love!
Thinking about how my life has changed, I can truly say that I am a whole new person. I walked in to the classroom my first day of school being only 19 years old, not knowing anything about the field. The only thing I was sure of was that I wanted a career, not just a job.
Now, I am a confident 20 year old, with a career – an amazing job that offers great hours and pay. I feel undefeatable! I get up every day loving what I do, going to work knowing that I work with amazing people and I don’t have to over exert myself for minimum wage or for someone else to mistreat me.
I would like to be an example for everyone out there who might think it’s not the right time to go back to school. I spent 2 years between high school and HTI and there are so many people who have waited longer. You don’t have to let more time go by – Start a career today!
My mother is currently working towards getting her GED and planning to continue her education in the medical field since she has seen my experiences. Being able to inspire people that I care about is very rewarding!
I have many future goals. Short term goal- saving money for a brand new car. But long term goal, go back to school in a couple years, further my education and continue to better myself. When you have will power the sky is the limit!