Pursuing Dreams

Wed May 18, 2022 at 04:36 PM

Dominique Fields

As a mother working full-time in the restaurant business, Dominique Fields knew she wanted to pursue higher education in the healthcare field. In 2019, she decided studying at Blue Ridge Community College would work best with her ever-changing schedule and began her endeavors to become a Registered Medical Assistant.

“I wanted to serve the public in a different capacity: a capacity that would ensure a full-time work schedule conducive to parenting, as well as a guaranteed full-time employment status with a full benefits package,” said Dominique.

Though the RMA coursework at BRCC was challenging, Dominique was determined to accomplish her goal. She credits the relationships that she developed with her instructors, advisors, and classmates to her success – ultimately creating a great support system and networking opportunity.

“The instructors were experts in the curriculum and demonstrated professionalism, support, and concern. Upon completion I felt as if I had a foundational knowledge of bedside manner, healthcare ethics and laws, my prescribed scope of practice, human anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, among others,” said Dominique. “I felt well-equipped to enter the healthcare industry and succeed as a Registered Medical Assistant.”

Upon completion of the RMA program, which also included a 160-hour externship, Dominique was able to apply for competitive positions within the Harrisonburg-Rockingham area and received an offer from Sentara RMH Cardiology. She began working the schedule she had envisioned for herself – Monday through Friday, with no late nights or weekend work, including a full benefits package and paid holidays.

“She kept moving forward, knowing what was on the other side was a better future for herself and her family. It’s rare that a student who has had some of her challenges comes in with that much drive, determination, and dedication. I’m very proud of Dominique for persevering and being the successful Registered Medical Assistant I knew she would be,” said Melissa Lambert, Dominque’s healthcare instructor at BRCC.

Dominique is currently enrolled in a Medical Billing and Coding course at BRCC and is considering pursing a Bachelor of Science degree with a specialization in Accounting, Finance, or Economics in order to focus on the administrative and business side of the healthcare industry. Dominique credits the affordability of her program at BRCC as well as the financial aid and grant options available to students pursuing certificate programs as being a stepping stone to her success.

“If I had to summarize my most valuable advice, I would say persevere, readjust, refocus, and finish. DON’T QUIT. The benefits of working through the challenges of pursuing your dreams far outweigh the obstacles,” said Dominique.