With only a high school diploma Brittany Olson was working as a home health aide, cooking, cleaning and shopping for elderly and disabled clients. Then she was laid off.
“I was sick of going nowhere and felt stuck,” she said. “I wasn’t on a career path.”
The job center staff helped Brittany consider other careers and eventually pointed her to the “Bridges to Healthcare” program at Chippewa Valley Technical College.
“I talked with the medical assistant at my clinic about the job and decided it would be a good way to go,” she recalled.
The career path began with a Medical Office Receptionist credential. From there Brittany enrolled in the degree program.
Now Brittany has a better job with better pay, better hours, no weekend shifts and an “overall better life.” She’s working as a certified medical assistant at the Marshfield Clinic.
“Before I graduated, while I was doing my practicum I applied for this job and got hired,” she explained.
The journey was not without challenges. She had a toddler and was put on bed rest due to pregnancy complications. Student loans helped cover the costs. Brittany credits her classmates, family and spouse for helping her get through the Certified Medical Assistant program and completing the Medical Assistant Associate degree in three semesters.
For now she is taking a breath, enjoying her new career and spending time with her family. In the future she might like to return to college for further education perhaps a physical therapist assistant degree.