Ofelia Batle had never found a career she loved, despite degrees in accounting and library science as well as a work history as an elementary school teacher and personal support worker. That all changed when a friend introduced her to medical office administration and Evergreen College.

Ofelia was exposed to the world of healthcare through her work as a personal support worker. She loved caring for people but found support work emotionally and physically draining. She was ready for a change. “If your heart doesn’t belong to your profession, then you won’t be happy” Ofelia says. Medical office administration appealed because it was also a service profession and she could combine many of her previous experiences and training.

When a close friend introduced her to Evergreen College, it was a turning point. As soon as she began the Medical Office Administration diploma course Ofelia felt like her brainpower was being put to good use. She says the course is different to others she’s done before. Unlike boring lectures or unassisted learning, she is engaged in classroom discussion.

Ofelia credits her enthusiasm for the course to her professor. ““Linda is not a lazy teacher. She doesn’t tell you to read pages on your own. Students are engaged.” Many students, like Ofelia, are new to Canada and some are new to education altogether but her professor accommodates them as well as those with more experience, like those with previous degrees or medical training. “Linda is the type of teacher that takes care of her pupils. She remembers her past and how she was a student, she’s always thinking about the path for her students and how to make her students have a good future.”

Ofelia found that Evergreen College was also highly accommodating to her needs. She was facing financial hardship and needed to be able to work part-time while studying. Evergreen College’s flexible payment scheme and varied classroom hours made that possible.

Although Ofelia is only a few weeks into the 32-week course, she already feels like a professional. “I feel like I’m in a professional and intellectual environment – talking about the medical terms. I feel like I can speak about the terminologies with confidence.”

Like all of Evergreen College’s courses, the Medical Office Administration diploma combines theory with practice. As well as learning the terminology, procedures and legalities, Ofelia practices mock scenarios, listens to guest speakers, goes on clinic visits and will complete her course with an internship in a real practice.

She is excited to begin her new career and one that she’s fallen in love with. Ofelia says she is grateful to Evergreen College for providing the opportunity. “I’m so happy. If I’m successful then Evergreen is a big part of my success and the success of my fellow students. The college is something that really changed my life.”

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