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Baby Girl Adopted By Her Nurse

Friday, April 22, 2016 at 5:59 am

As a nurse, you'll be given the chance to bond with hundreds, maybe thousands, of people. Some of the bonds made during your work hours can stick with you for years, or in some cases, the rest of your life. This is one of those times.

Nicole is a healthy three-year-old toddler currently living in New Mexico, but getting to "happy and healthy" was an uphill climb. According to a story by ABC News, Nicole was born with a rare birth defect called omphalocele, a condition in which certain organs are outside the body. Needless to say, she required a lot of care. That care included an extended stay in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, and later, an even longer stay in the pediatric unit of the University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque. She'd stay in that unit for over a year.

Enter Amber Boyd, a nurse in the pediatric unit who volunteered to take over as the primary caregiver of Nicole's case.

"Nicole was pretty sick that whole first year and a couple of months of her life," Boyd told ABC News. "Right around her first birthday, she was making progress, [but] her needs were beyond anything anyone could've accommodated at home. Her biological parents, their rights were taken away and her twin sister had already gone home with another family. They just weren't medical professionals and she essentially needed ICU care at home. [The hospital] was looking into medical foster care."

It was then that the idea first struck Amber. As Nicole's existing caregiver, she could provide both foster care and medical care. After consulting with her husband, the couple applied for a foster care license, and in 2014-after almost 18 months in the hospital under Amber's care-Nicole finally came home.

It was, as Amber describes it, a "bond meant to happen", and one that happened thanks to one hardworking nurse with the training, commitment, and drive to rise to the challenge.

It goes without saying that, as a nurse, your work changes the lives of many, many people. And some of those people will wind up changing yours as well. It's one of the secret perks of the profession, a benefit that makes those long shifts more than worth it in the end.

If you'd like more information on training for a career in nursing, check out the many fast-track programs offered at Unitek College by clicking here.

Smile, It’s Good For You!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016 at 6:53 am

With April 1st rapidly approaching, we thought it would be a good idea to go ahead and remind you that Friday is also April Fool's Day. Consider this a public service notification, and remember to think twice before sharing that too-good-to-be-true news story on glass-bottom planes, selfie drones, or Cheetoh's cologne (all actual April Fools pranks, by the way). In fact, take an extra grain of salt with everything you read on the internet on Friday... except for the posts you read on this page, of course.

In all honesty, though, the annual leg-pulling can get pretty hilarious, and it has the added benefit of forcing us to laugh at ourselves. In fact, some historians believe that the tradition of April Fool's goes all the way back to Constantine, an age when the role of fools (or jesters) was to wisely "use humor to put life in perspective". Humor's role in improving lives continues today in a career field very close to all of us at Unitek College... specifically those of us involved with the Unitek College nursing programs.

"Laughter is the best medicine" is a phrase that gets thrown around a lot, and as it turns out, it's a lot more than just a fun saying. The medical benefits of laughter are undeniable; it's been found to combat depression, relieve pain, boost immunity, and lower stress. "The wiring is so strong that the brain responds even when we smile at ourselves in the mirror or simulate laughing with enthusiasm," writes Sebastien Gendry, author of the Laughter Wellness Method. That's right... even faking a laugh has positive effects.

Movies like Robin Williams' Patch Adams bring this concept to life within a medical context, and any patient who's spent time in a hospital can tell you that the doctors or nurses who made them smile were worth their weight in gold.

As you make your way through the Unitek College vocational nursing programs or the online RN-to-BSN program, you're absorbing all the important in's and out's of the profession. You're working with the latest equipment in the Unitek College labs, you're staying up-to-date on the rapidly changing world of medical techniques and terminology, you're turning yourself into a valuable medical asset, and that means a lot of hard data to retain.

But as you study, remember to keep in mind the lighter side of the career; the opportunities you have to bring a smile to someone who may be scared, in pain, suffering loss, or dealing with upsetting news. As William Osler said, "The good physician treats the disease; the great physician treats the patient who has the disease."

Keep the laughter and smiles going year-round, not just April 1st, and your future patients won't be able to thank you enough.

(Oh, and that ad you'll see Friday about the new Uber boat rides? Also a joke.)

If you'd like more information on the Unitek College fast-track nursing programs, click here.

Fast Track to a Better w2

Tuesday, March 22, 2016 at 6:34 pm

Can you believe it’s almost April? In some ways, it feels like we just took down those Christmas lights, and already we’re prepping for April showers, egg hunts, baseball, and everyone’s favorite spring day… Tax Day (April 18th this year, in case you need to mark your calendars). With that IRS deadline rapidly approaching, we know there’s probably a W2 with your name on it laying around your room somewhere—a single piece of paper that for many of us sums up everything we earned over the past year.

For some people, examining that W2 comes with a wave of pride (“Wow, I made more than I thought I did!”) followed by a wave of guilt (“Wow, I must havespent more than I thought I did…”) But for others among us, looking at that annual income sheet is a moment of self-evaluation; one where we look at that final number and think “I can do better than this.”

Fortunately, we can help you do just that.

As a general rule, better education almost always leads to better jobs, and better jobs almost always involve better income. For instance, a Bureau of Labor Statistics study found that the leap from high school diploma to associate’s degree alone adds up to an average of over $6,000more per year. Education may take some investment up front, but the possibilities are more than worth it, and that’s where Unitek College comes in.

Our hand-picked faculty is standing by to help turn your existing life experience and work ethic into a bigger, more rewarding career path. Whether you’re checking out our fast-track certification programs in Information Technology, Medical Assisting, Pharmacy Tech,Dental Assisting, or Nursing, you’retaking your first steps towards new career opportunities by making yourself a more valuable employee.That can easily lead toqualifying for more job openings, opportunities for higher pay, and chances to advance in the field of your choice.

And hey, with the speed of our fast-track programs, you might even see some positive changes as early as your next W2. And if you’re a hard-worker, an eager learner, and dedicated to furthering your career… then you deserve a better W2.

Just be sure and still hang onto those old ones for a few years at least… the tax guys are picky like that.

If you’d like information on enrolling in one of Unitek College’s fast-track education programs, contact us here.

Five Traits of Great Pharmacy Technicians

Wednesday, March 16, 2016 at 5:54 am

Great news, Pharmacy Technician students! According to a recent Gallup poll, if you work behind a pharmaceutical counter, chances are, people like you--and with good reason. As the third most trusted profession in America, you are the person charged with providing sick and injured customers with relief. Of course, with that trust comes quite a lot of expectations--but that‘s where we can help.

The Pharmacy Technician program at Unitek College is uniquely designed to prepare students to meet those expectations and compete in the quickly growing job market. As you study for your certification, you're familiarizing yourself with the latest medical terminology, training with the latest equipment, and keeping pace with industry trends in the rapidly changing field--making you a promising candidate for those ideal positions.

Of course, simply knowing the material and passing your certification exams is only half the journey towards becoming a good Pharmacy Technician. There are also a few personal qualities you'll want to cultivate in order to truly succeed.

Patience - You'll be dealing with a lot of sick and hurting people, which can sometimes lead to short tempers or cranky attitudes. And in these situations, a little bit of patience will go a long way. Keep in mind that every person who approaches your counter is fighting a battle you know very little about, and they're dealing with the consequences in their own way. It might be tough some days to remember that their mood swings aren't really directed at you, but a little natural patience will help you see past the surface to the hurting person who just needs a little help.

Attention to Detail - Accuracy is incredibly important when dealing with medications, and your customers are many times staking their lives on you getting orders exactly right. Train yourself to pay extra attention to detail and avoid those costly--and potentially deadly--careless mistakes.

Commitment to Ethics - Good pharmacies can go bad quickly, and it only takes one or two bad seeds to start the trend. Compassion and empathy are excellent traits in this line of work, but you also need the assertiveness to say "no" when asked to do something you know is wrong—something you'll learn directly from your Pharmacy Supervisor. Pay careful attention as they teach you how to spot the fake prescriptions, how to recognize the signs of prescription medicine abuse, and as they explain why you must resist the urge to counsel anyone on medication--even on over-the-counter brands. It's hard to turn people away, but in some cases, it's something you have to be able to do.

Communication Skills - Train yourself to speak clearly, understandably, and professionally at all times. And remember, not every customer who visits your counter will be fluent in English. Fluency in other languages will go a long way in helping your customers, and has the added benefit of making you a much more valuable asset to your employer (or prospective employer).

Empathy - The job of a Pharmacy Technician is one that requires you to put the needs of others before your own. Practice this both at work and at home until it becomes second nature. Your customer may not be the easiest person in the world to deal with--they might just be downright nasty--but you have the opportunity in each interaction to make a positive difference in their lives. Make the job about compassion, and you'll find rewards you couldn't have imagined.

For more information on the Unitek College Pharmacy Technician program, click here.

Paying It Forward: A nurse’s act of kindness, 44 years later

Wednesday, March 9, 2016 at 5:49 am

You're probably familiar with the phrase "pay it forward", a concept where people do good deeds or something selfless with no expectation of the act being returned. The idea is that these unselfish acts create a "ripple effect", and the positive actions spread from person to person until many more lives are touched. For some, paying it forward means going out of their way to find a way to make a difference in someone's life. But for others-especially those in the medical field-these opportunities come with the scrubs.

As a nurse (or medical assistant, dental assistant, or pharmacy technician), you'll be working every day with people who are hurting; people with visible needs who are in your place of business looking for help. And while the days can get long and the line of patients can seem to stretch on forever some days, every person who walks through the door is a person to whom you could be a life changer.

One example of that "pay it forward" ripple effect just recently made news headlines across the country. According to a story by the Associated Press, an elderly patient in the Milwaukee area received the surprise of a lifetime when she recognized her nurse as someone she herself had treated years ago.

Decades before Lynn Bartos began receiving treatments for her rheumatoid arthritis, she worked as a nurse at the local Children's Hospital. One of her responsibilities was the care of a young toddler, Nicole Krahn, who had to receive regular IV's due to an intestinal complication shortly after her birth. Bartos made it a point to make Nicole as comfortable as possible, and the two quickly formed a strong bond throughout the treatments. Instead of fearing her regular visits to the hospital, little Nicole began to look forward to them as they meant getting to see her friend, Nurse Bartos. That care made a profound impact on Nicole, and the love and attention she received from her nurse stuck with her the rest of her life.

Fast forward to the present. Little Nicole isn't so little anymore, she's become a nurse herself, administering IV's at a Milwaukee clinic. Imagine her surprise when she discovered that her newest patient wasn't a stranger-but her "Nee Nee" (the name she gave Bartos during their time together at the Children's Hospital).

"It was an absolute gift to me to reconnect with Nicole," Bartos said. "That's how I look at it, that I was given a gift to know that 44 years of nursing, I did make a difference."

Every day, nurses, dental assistants, medical assistants, and pharmacy technicians are given the opportunity to make similar differences in people's lives. And while you may only see a handful of these patients later on in life, potentially thousands of others could still be feeling the positive glow of the "ripple effect" you started.

It's that potential for positive change that motivates the faculty and staff at the Unitek College campuses to instill the strongest experience, training, and ethics in our students. The better we train you, the better you'll be at making a difference in people's lives. Making a patient's day may seem insignificant in the grand scheme of things, but as Nicole and Lynn discovered, there's no telling how far those ripples can roll.

For more information on training for a career in nursing, medical assisting, dental assisting, or more, please visit our courses page here.

Meet Stacy Black, Unitek College Graduate

Wednesday, March 2, 2016 at 5:57 am

Almost exactly a year ago, Stacy Black made the decision to pursue a career in Medical Assisting. So in January, she enrolled in the Unitek College Medical Assisting program; in October, she joined the ranks of Unitek College alumni, and just one week ago, she passed her NCCT exam to become a certified Medical Assistant.

"It's hard to pinpoint the best part of studying at Unitek College," Stacy told us. "My whole experience was my favorite part." One factor in particular for Stacy was the Unitek College staff, who she says regularly encouraged her to keep going, regardless of the obstacles.

"They encouraged me to keep going. I even got over my fear of needles and of amateurs not knowing how to draw blood. And once that passed, it was my pleasure to help out a fellow student get over their fear of sticking someone with a needle."

Two people in particular stood out to Stacy during her studies. Her instructor (whom she refers to as "Mr. A") "was very helpful whenever I needed it and always answered any questions that I had. He's very caring and wants to see people grow in his field and teach them what he knows."

Susie, who works in the Unitek College career center, also made a big impact on Stacy's experience. "I love Susie to pieces! She was always available to me when I needed her. There were times that I wanted to quit, but these two always encouraged me to keep going and to not let anything or anyone get in my way."

With her NCCT successfully completed, Stacy plans to pursue her new career path full throttle after the holidays. Through her Unitek College externship, she's already been given the opportunity to test out her new skills outside the classroom, and she can't wait to put those skills to work full-time.

Stacy encourages any prospective students on the fence about Unitek College to give it a try. "The staff really cares about your success and will do whatever they can to help you."

Congratulations to Stacy on her graduation and certification! We can’t wait to hear what comes next.