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More than 1,500 families, including some American Institute students, depend on the pantry every month, says Admissions Representative Theresa (Terry) Barreto, who helps coordinate the school’s food donation effort. “It’s a critical resource for our community.”
The pantry was named for a Catholic priest who once ran bingo fundraisers at the church. He also distributed food and clothing to people in need. One night, as he was leaving the church after bingo, he was shot and killed by one of the people he’d helped earlier in the day. Since then, the community has supported the pantry to honor his dedication to service.
The Father English pantry is unusual, because it is organized like a grocery store, with each item priced in points. Patrons are given a certain number of points to “spend” based on the size of their family, and they can shop the aisles for the foods they prefer.
“Everyone should have choices,” Terry says. “Some families have medical issues, or allergies. At Father English, they can choose the foods they want.”
Each month, the pantry lets Terry know what types of food they need most, and Terry tells the students. At holidays and before school lets out for summer, there are special drives to ensure the pantry is well stocked for those critical times of year. By the end of the month, the box by the front door is full again.
“One of our core values at American Institute is service, and our students embrace that with their whole hearts,” says Sherry Muse, Assistant Campus President. “This is our community, and we all have something to give. Buying a few extra cans of beans to put in the box is an easy way to help make our community stronger.”
“We’re always looking for opportunities to give back to the community and to demonstrate our students’ skills,” said Carrie Weinerman, Massage Therapy Program Director at the Toms River campus of American Institute. “And no one works harder than day care employees. So, I offered to have our students come to the day care center and give massages to the staff.”
The next week, Ms. Weinerman and her students brought their new massage therapy skills to the Learning Experience Day Care Center, where 25 employees enjoyed well-deserved chair massages.
“The students massaged all the teachers, assistants, administration – everyone that works there came in,” said Ms. Weinerman. “They were so excited and so thankful. We all loved every second of it.”
The students also handed out business cards and circulated a sign-in sheet so the day care staff could make follow-up appointments at the American Institute student massage clinic.
“It’s important for our students to see that people in many different occupations need massages,” said Ms. Weinerman. “They feel so great knowing they helped so many people, and that everyone they massaged absolutely loved it. It gives the students a lot of confidence.”
The students did such a fantastic job, in fact, that the day care manager asked if they could come back regularly. Ms. Weinerman is planning to organize monthly visits next year.
“I’m proud of our team and our students for their commitment to make a difference in our community by providing service wherever and whenever they can. It’s an important part of what makes American Institute such a great place to be, and I’m delighted to see it in action,” noted Campus President Timothy M. Rodgers.
1. Revitalize your resume. Take a fresh look at this critical document, as your first impression with prospective employers. Can you strengthen your qualifications with certifications in your field or volunteer experience? Clarify your achievements? Correct any errors? Search online for examples of well-crafted resumes in your field, and see what you can do to polish your professional presentation.
2. Record your success stories. Prepare for future interviews by drafting short stories (3-5 sentences) that answer common hiring questions, like “Tell us about a problem you solved successfully.” “What is your greatest personal achievement?” “Why did you decide to pursue this career?” “What strengths to you bring to this role?”
3. Reach out to your network. “The best time to network is in advance of job opportunities being posted,” says Hannah Morgan of US News & World Report. The holidays are a great time to reconnect with old acquaintances and let them know you’re looking for new opportunities.
4. Review your social media presence. Hiring managers often search candidates’ social media, so make sure they’ll find only positive content. Ask friends to untag inappropriate photos or posts and create/update your profile on professional networking sites such as LinkedIn.
5. Remember to take care of yourself. Make time for exercise, healthy food and a good night’s sleep. You can enjoy the festivities, but stay in fighting form – you’ll want to be feeling good when opportunity strikes.
Above all, remain confident. You have an excellent education and the support of your instructors and your American Institute Family. The Career Services team is here and ready to help with practice interviews, resume reviews, and networking skills, so be sure to schedule time to meet with them if you haven’t already.
October 24, 2016, All Locations – American Institute joined the nation again this year in celebrating the contributions and dedication of Medical Assistants during Medical Assistants Recognition Week – “MARWeek” – an annual event sponsored by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). Medical Assisting students and staff at American Institute were treated to appreciation meals and a special message from their Campus Presidents.
“As providers of healthcare career education, we’re close to Medical Assistants while they are training and once they go into the field, so we know just how hard they work to ensure exceptional patient care,” said Christopher Coutts, Chief Operating Officer. “It’s a challenging role, yet we see Medical Assistants provide caring smiles and good humor each day, because they love what they do and the people they help.”
“The Heart of Healthcare” is the theme of MARWeek, a reference to the critical role Medical Assistants play helping to ease anxiety and enable patients to effectively engage with their health care providers.
“Students choose Medical Assisting because they truly care and want to help people,” said Brooke Baran, Vice President of Education. “Our hands-on training program, which includes mock patient visits and role plays, prepares our students to confidently take their place on the medical team.”
Healthcare providers recognize that having skilled, caring professionals on the front lines improves the patient experience, which can contribute to better health outcomes. As a result, Medical Assisting is projected to be one of the fastest growing occupations.*
“I’m personally grateful for the Medical Assistants who have assisted me and my family through some difficult moments,” said Mr. Coutts. “It’s important to recognize their contributions during MARWeek and throughout the year.”
*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Medical Assistants, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/medical-assistants.htm.
October 8, 2016, West Hartford, CT – It took American Institute student Ricardo Jackson a little longer than he expected to finish the 5K race at this year’s Hartford Marathon.
“I started off late and was in the back of the group. I ran faster to try and catch up, and I wore myself out,” Ricardo said. “Another runner came up along side me, and she encouraged me to keep going. She guided me on breathing and helped me to set a good pace.”
Boosted by his fellow runner’s support, Ricardo kept going. And going. Instead of a 5K (3.1 miles), Ricardo finished the half-marathon, running 13.1 miles in 2 hours, 39 minutes and 35 seconds.
“I just thought ‘This is my moment, I have to do it.’ And I went for the gold,” Ricardo said. “The woman I ran with said most people don’t complete the half-marathon on their first try. She was amazed. I was a little amazed myself.”
American Institute is a proud sponsor of the Eversource Hartford Marathon, which attracted more than 12,000 runners this year. AI medical assisting students provided blood pressure screenings during the pre-event expo and at the race, demonstrating their skills and gaining valuable experience providing hands-on care.
Ricardo is enrolled in the Computers, Networking, and Security program at the West Hartford location. He hopes to use his new skills to get a better job and eventually continue his education in audio engineering and music production.
“Once I got into class, I was transformed,” Ricardo said. “I feel great every morning, and I like the progress I’m achieving. If I can make this change, anybody can make it.”
February 17, 2017, Clifton, NJ – Bags of rice fill a box by the front door to American Institute’s Clifton campus. There is brown rice and white rice, long-grain rice and wild rice, because different people like different kinds of rice. Another month, the box was filled with different kinds of beans, all donated by […]
January 4, 2017, Somerset, NJ — On Wednesday, January 4, 2017, American Institute celebrated the Grand Opening of a new campus located in Somerset, NJ. The Somerset campus is the third location in New Jersey for the American Institute family of schools, and begins career training with the first classes of students in January and […]