When we interviewed Harvey back in March, he was a new grad from our Medical Assistant program with dreams on making an impact on the lives of others in the medical field. Since getting hired in April, we asked him some pressing questions about the hiring process, his day-to-day and #LifeAfterSCI.
I am Harvey Middleton. I am SCI Alumnus of the Austin Campus. I graduated in 2016 from the Medical Assistant program and currently work at the Universal Men’s Clinic in Austin.
Tell about what life was like for you after you graduated from SCI.
Immediately after graduation, I tried to find employment and it was rather difficult because employers want someone already with more experience in the field. But, I was getting phone calls every day from staff at the SCI campus, so they did their job to do their best to get me placed [in a job].
Did you go on a lot of interviews?
Yes, yes I did. I went on a lot of interviews, a lot of phone interviews, but [many] were looking for someone with a little more experience [than me].
How has your life changed after SCI?
After SCI, I got married to my daughter’s mom, but she needed to leave for Korea. So, it’s been a little bumpy, but it was funny because I was cooking dinner for my wife, and my phone rang, and it was what would [end up being] my clinic manager. It was 8 o’clock at night, and he asks if he could bring me in for an interview. So, the next day, I went on the interview and…I just reassured him that I was the guy for the job. The next day, at 6 in the morning, he offers me the job.
I’ve been here two months, they gave me a dollar raise [per hour], and made me the Lead MA [Medical Assistant] here. I’m possibly moving to primary care in the future. I have been doing really well here. They made sure that I had a place to stay, that my family was okay. They really take care of me here [at Universal Men’s Clinic].
Tell me about the day-to-day.
It’s fast. *laughs* The day to day operations [are fast] because I do all the injections, the blood work…seeing patients: it’s-fast paced and it’s a lot of information you have to learn. I had to re-certify all over again. So everything I did at SCI, blood draws, injections, working with computer, answering phones, I had to re-do all of that during the training process. I had to get signed off by the doctor and the manager to make sure I was trained correctly.
What is your favorite part of your job?
My favorite part of my job is interacting with patients. They are full of life and they’ve left compliments, like “whoever that MA guy is, he’s awesome!” It makes me feel good that I can impact somebody’s life because the patients that come in here have serious issues that they’ve been hiding and now they feel more comfortable dealing with me. And knowing that I have a big impact on this clinic makes me feel a whole lot better.
I learn a lot from the doctors that I didn’t know as far as the proper doses, different medications, just all around business-type things from my clinic managers. I work with a team of really, really bright men. They really help me see things outside of the clinic, especially from a business perspective.
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned since being on the job?
A big thing, as far as my Clinic Manager [goes], is keeping him informed. You know, if something comes up, like I had an incident where two tires blew out on my way to work, and he was more concerned about my safety. He didn’t care if I came in, he honestly didn’t want me to come in, he said “look, I know you’re going through a lot, if there is anything the company can do to make sure your car is taken care of, then tell us.” That lets me know that I’m wanted here, and we’re family.
You have to stay on your doctors, your managers, your supervisors. Give them that assurance and just keep in contact with them, like “traffic is a little bit bad”, “I’m not understanding this.” Ask questions! Ask questions! Ask questions! I am a question-asking person. If I don’t know, I will ask you until you get tired of me asking questions. *laughs*
Communication is the biggest key to success, especially in this field.
What advice would you have for future students at SCI?
Trust your instructors. A lot of what I learned from SCI was very beneficial to what I do now. What they’re teaching you is exactly right. Any personal things that they may tell you, like “don’t take things to heart”, “you’re going to mess up”, and “just never quit”. And it’s going to be rough at times.
It wasn’t easy for me even being a lead mentor, you know getting out there, it was hard to find a job. But I can honestly say that Career Services made sure that they didn’t sleep until I had a job, until I was taken care of. Just go in there, and every day tell yourself that you can do it. There is no trick to success. [Be in the] right uniform, on time and just do what your’e told. There is always room for improvement and be able to take constructive criticism. Just enjoy SCI. I had fun. The friends I made there, we still hang out. We still keep in touch with each other. I just wish everyone good luck.
What advice would you have for an alumni that are struggling to find a job?
Tyler is my Clinic Manager and regardless of my background, he gave me a chance. I knew that I was qualified for those other jobs, but they didn’t want to take the chance.
When someone gives you the opportunity, take advantage of it, give them your all.
It’s days I come in here, I’m tired, it’s a lot of workload, with my wife and child being gone and making sure they’re okay. It’s a lot on me. But, I walk in here with a smile and I give you 110% from 7:45 to 5 o’clock and [I] get noticed. Your hard work will never go unnoticed. Just always always always give 110%. Don’t come in halfway do your job, just do it fully, and you will get noticed.
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