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Eighteen Honored at VGCC Medical Assisting Pinning

Vance-Granville Community College held a pinning ceremony for its Medical Assisting program graduates on August 3 at the college’s Franklin County Campus in Louisburg, where the program is conducted.The 18 graduates were: Naomi Allen, Ernestine Brodie, Christine Hawkins, Jennifer Privette, Connie Stiltner, Robin Terry and Amber Williamson, all of Henderson; Carolyn Donnelly of Bunn; Tabitha Floyd and Amy Harper, both of Franklinton; Brittany Fox and Amy Minor, both of Creedmoor; Barbara Holley and Nicole Phillips, both of Youngsville; Carolyn C. Slade of Norlina; Martha Stallings and Falesha Wilkins, both of Louisburg; and Nicole Williamson of Oxford.VGCC Vice President of Instruction Dr. Angela Ballentine welcomed those in attendance and commended students on their hard work. She described the 2007 Medical Assisting class as ranging in age from 19 to 58. Half of the students were married. The class as a whole had 17 children, one step-child and nine grandchildren, with another on the way. Six students were Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) before earning the Medical Assisting diploma, and two already held associate degrees. Six were continuing their studies to earn the Associate in Applied Science degree in Medical Assisting, and two had been accepted into VGCC’s Associate Degree Nursing program.Medical Assisting program head/instructor Tammy Care thanked the assembled friends and family members for supporting the students. “This group had great energy and enthusiasm from the beginning,” Care said of the 2007 class. They also enjoyed working in clinical “externships” at area medical facilities, and one even volunteered so that she could gain additional hands-on experience.Class president Barbara Holley and fellow student Ernestine Brodie spoke on behalf of their classmates. Brodie said that the class had grown to become “a caring family, through blood sweat and tears — literally!”Student Connie Stiltner sang a solo, “Do I Make You Proud?” and dedicated it to Care, who responded with an emphatic “Yes, you all do!” The program head then presented each graduate with a pin, signifying that each had completed the course of study, and with a rose, symbolizing love and courage. The students then lit candles and recited the creed of the American Association of Medical Assistants. Student Christine Hawkins read an emotional original poem to conclude the ceremony.Now in its ninth year at VGCC, the Medical Assisting curriculum program prepares multi-skilled health care professionals who are qualified to perform administrative, clinical, and laboratory procedures. Because VGCC’s program is nationally accredited, graduates are eligible to sit for the American Association of Medical Assistants’ (AAMA) certification examination to become Certified Medical Assistants. Graduates have found jobs in physicians’ offices, health maintenance organizations, health departments and hospitals.Above: VGCC Medical Assisting program graduates included, kneeling in front, Nicole Phillips; seated (from left), Carolyn Donnelly, Amy Harper, Barbara Holley and Christine Hawkins; standing in back (from left), Carolyn Slade, Nicole Williamson, Martha Stallings, Ernestine Brodie, Tabitha Floyd, Amy Minor, Brittany Fox, Jennifer Privette, Robin Terry, Connie Stiltner, Falesha Wilkins, Amber Williamson and Naomi Allen. (VGCC Photo)