Laurie Benitez started her career as a medical assistant at a teaching hospital in Arkansas – a state that doesn’t require medical assistants to be certified. Her mom got sick in 2014, and Laurie decided to move back home to Texas, but she found out she wouldn’t be able to continue her career without earning additional credentials.
After doing a lot of research and visiting several schools in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, Laurie says she knew Carrington College’s Mesquite campus was the place for her.
“As soon as I set foot on campus, I felt like I was at home. It was so encouraging to see students of all ages working together and supporting each other. I knew I wanted to be a part of the Carrington family.”
Her husband wasn’t so sure about Laurie going back to school. He was concerned about the financial and time commitment it would require from his already busy wife, who was taking care of her mother and three teenaged children.
“My family wasn’t sold on the idea at first,” she said. “It’s not as common for women to go to college or pursue professional careers in our culture, and they were worried that I wouldn’t be home as often to take care of the family or spend time with them.”
But after visiting the campus to hear about the program himself, Laurie’s husband had a change of heart and gave her his full support…the rest of the family did too.
Laurie graduated from the Medical Assisting program in June of 2015 and now works as a bariatric medical assistant at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas. She credits the Carrington team for giving her both the technical training and the professional skills she needed to land the job.
“They prepared us for the job hunt on every level, even if we needed a little tough love every once and a while. We did mock interviews, resume workshops and other exercises to make sure we were equipped to communicate effectively with potential employers, including doctors, surgeons and other healthcare professionals,” she said.
The experience has inspired Laurie to continue her education even further. Right now she’s pursuing her Associate of Science degree in Health Studies Online through Carrington College. When she’s finished with that, she plans to continue her education with the pursuit of earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from a fellow DeVry Education Group institution, Chamberlain University. The best part? She might be eligible for transfer credits and her current employer will provide support her academic journey.
“Before I started this journey, I didn’t think I was school material. I wouldn’t have dreamed of doing the things I’m doing now, but my Carrington family believed in me and showed me how to realize my true potential,” she said.
 For comprehensive consumer information, visit carrington.edu/cc/ma
 For comprehensive consumer information, visit carrnigton.edu/cc/hs