My name is Colisha Poston. I am 22 years old. Initially after graduating from high school, I attended NIU majoring in Pre-Med/Biology, but because of an family emergency & financial hardship I was unable to stay in school for the next year. After coming back home I decided to enroll in a medical assistant program in Merrionette Park, IL . My classes met Mon – Fri. from 1pm-5pm & ended with a 160 hr. long externship after 7 months of instruction.
Why were you interested in medical assistant training?
I was interested in this program because it was close to what I was already studying while at NIU, and I’ve always wanted to pursue a career where I was able to help others.
How did you choose the medical assistant program you attended?
I went up to the school one day and talked to one of the admissions advisors, who gave me more information about the program and took me on a tour of the school. I liked everything that I saw that day and decided that it would be a good fit for me. And plus the school was close to my house and very easy to get to by public transportation. (I don’t drive)
What did you like about the program?
I really liked the small class room sizes. Its nice to see that your instructors really know who you are and care about your success. I also really enjoyed the time spent in clinical lab, learning to do different injections and how to perform various other lab procedures.
What did you not like about the program?
Each term went by very quickly, it was too fast paced, we had exams every 5 days for 7 months.
What types of jobs did you and your fellow classmates get after completing the training? How much did these jobs pay?
I have not been able to get a relevant job after completing my program. Many of the interviews I’ve been sent on by my school were for CNA (certified nursing assistant) positions and I was not informed of that beforehand.
What was the total cost for your medical assistant program?
My tuition was around $14500, it included all books and materials, 2 uniforms, book bag and also the fee for taking the RMA state exam.
How did you pay for your medical assistant program?
After filing for the FASFA I was left with a balance of $240. I was able to pay by a payment plan of $30 a month.
What advice would you give to students regarding paying for their medical assistant training?
I would advise student to look at all their options first. If you don’t have the money for school then maybe you should save up before you go, that way you won’t have to stress yourself with worrying about where, or how you’re going to get your next payment.
What things should a student look for when choosing a medical assistant program?
Students should definitely compare and research the schools before enrolling, that’s something that I wished I had done before attending. If I would have done that then I would have made sure that I went to a school that I would be able to qualify to take the CMA exam, so that I would be able to secure a job in my chosen field.