When Laura Rodriguez was nine years old she was diagnosed with Cerebral Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM). As she struggled to stay alive, she began go appreciate all the love and attention provided by the medical staff who was taking care of her and providing support to her parents. Her appreciation for the work of the medical assistants and nurses fueled her desire to learn about medicine herself. The Medical Assisting Program at Cañada College was the right program for her to pursue her career goals of working in the medical field and helping people. Laura looked forward to her homework and helping others during class who also shared her passion for helping people. Laura put in the hard work and graduated from the Medical Assisting Program, and later, after receiving her degree, Laura worked in the Medical Assistant Residency Program in Sutter Health.
What initially made you decide to take Medical Assisting classes at Cañada College?
The immense gratitude I felt after my own experience, I wanted nothing more than to give back.
What did you enjoy the most about the Medical Assisting Program at Cañada College?
I enjoyed seeing the excitement of Medicine in my peer’s faces, and the community we build to help those in need.
How do you feel your courses in the Medical Assisting program prepared you for your
The courses prepared me to be aware of the patients’ needs overall. The medical field is scary because at any given time anything can happen with the patient, and it is our job to stay calm to be able to protect the patient from any harm. To be able to protect the patient, the medical assistant needs to be able to protect himself or herself as well, an example of this is personal protective equipment (PPE).
What advice would you give to students currently in the Medical Assisting program
at Cañada College?
Take it easy and soak it all in, but do not forget to take care of yourself first. Something I didn’t mention is that I have not had it easy, and that may happen to a lot of people because that’s just it, we are people and we are faced with our own problems. I was diagnosed with Hyperthyroidism while I was a student in the Medical Assisting Program. It started with my hand shaking, but the problem just got worse and worse, and now both of my hands shake, and my heart races, and I sweat a lot. What I need you all to take out of this is that I have not had it easy with my own body keeping me from doing what I love, but I stay determined to be a Medical Assistant. Bumps on the road will happen, but always remember what your motive has always been.
What is next in your career?
My goal has always been the same. I want to work as a Medical Assistant for a few years, and then start the process to become a Registered Nurse.