Pinnacle Career Institute

Student Spotlight | Medical Assistant featuring Nona Hansen

Student Spotlight | Medical Assistant featuring Nona Hansen

My reasons for choosing PCI are somewhat simple; I needed a career change and to realize and focus on my talents, creativity, and ability to help people in any which way I can in the medical field.  I chose the Medical Assistant program because I have been in the health field for over 15 years, doing various jobs from front office records/ registration to medical transcription, nurse aide, and now becoming a certified medical assistant.  Right now I want to focus on working as a medical assistant before I decide where and what medical field specialty I want to become more involved in such as gynecology or physical therapy. 

I am a non-traditional student (45-50-year-old range) whereas the average age is in the 20-to-30 range.  I must admit I was slightly intimidated by the younger students but I figured I’m not THAT old, and there is always room for growth and change at any age.  You never stop learning as you grow older albeit the world around you changes all the time.  There is always something new and exciting to learn and get involved in.

Before I started the medical assistant program at PCI, I was working as a nurse’s aide at a university’s student health center.  I built my career there, so I got to learn much more than I bargained for, and it worked to my advantage.  This position helped me realize my potential in helping people get better and feel better.  It was exciting because it was something new and different, and learning the physical aspects of this part of health care.  I learned how to take vital signs, set up for physical exams, do some data entry in EMR and learned more about patient care and much more. 

After a few years it was becoming mundane because I was limited to doing certain things.  I thought about getting into nursing school, but the nurses I worked with were not good examples for me.  However, I do believe nurses are the bulk of health care because they do so much, and go beyond what they are called to do.  My passion for helping people was still there, but becoming diminished.  Deep down inside of me I knew that I could do a lot more, and be more productive.  My supervisor told me about PCI, and the medical assistant program. After a long discussion with her, my passion started to come back to life, so I called PCI and spoke to one of the administration representatives.

The person I spoke with was Crystal Gilliland, although she is longer at PCI, she helped me and directed me to make a positive change to my career and life.  We had the best conversation regarding my goals in the medical field, and the changes I wanted to make in my life.  It’s like she knew exactly what I was going through, and what I wanted in my career and life.  She got the ball rolling for me, and right then and there I applied to PCI and got accepted.  I thank God she was there at the right time and moment; I will never forget her. 

The next important person in my life was Ms. Lindsey Baynham in helping me achieve my goals.  She is a true blessing to PCI and to the students who enroll in the medical assistant program.  She knows her game as a medical assistant and she keeps it real and to the point.  There were times when some of the lessons became overwhelming and somewhat difficult, but she was there to explain and encourage to keep pressing on.  In reality, the MA program is about a 2-year program but it was fitted down to one year.  Each class session was exciting and I was ready to learn something new and different. 

When it came time to physically start drawing blood and doing other CLIA-waivered procedures, that was the most fun and challenging part.  My biggest fear was doing blood draws because it involved needles and sticking actual people.  This intense anxiety would overcome me and Lindsey could see it in my face and actions.  She talked to me and encouraged me to take it slow and apply what we learned so far.  Still, I was having this overwhelming anxiety until we talked about why I was having this anxiety.  She understood why and told me that she was here to teach me the right way and to relax.  Soon after that I was in better control and more confident.  After that hurdle, everything seemed to fall into place.  My confidence level shot up and it gave me the courage to succeed and fulfill my goals to become an MA.  There are no words to describe how Ms. Lindsey helped me personally and professionally.  Much love and happiness to her!!

I really thank God for PCI and all the staff, instructors, and students that helped me achieve this goal!  Everyone has been awesome and wonderful as well as helpful and encouraging.  In all my years of taking higher education courses at universities or junior colleges, PCI is the best institution I’ve attended where the people genuinely care about you and your success as a student and as a professional in your chosen career field.  They will work with you and help you out in any way that they can. 

So, if anyone is considering a career change or starting out new, please look into PCI and the programs they offer.  Get to know the staff and instructors as well as other students.  Everyone helps out someone in one way or another.  You as a student are not just another number, you are seen as a person with great potential and success.  PCI changed my life, professionally and personally, and I am so grateful for all the people who helped me to become a better person and to be successful as a Certified Clinical Medical Assistant.

God bless Pinnacle Career Institute and all the administration staff, instructors, current students, and future students! 

With love, peace, and happiness,

Nona Hansen

Class of 2016

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