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Carrington College Blog

Faculty Q&A with Medical Assisting Instructor Kymberly Villeda

October 18, 2022

It had never occurred to Kymberly Villeda to become a teacher. She was enjoying a successful career as a Medical Assistant in various medical care specialties when a career college representative noticed her LinkedIn profile and invited her to lunch. “Sure, why not,” she thought.

Kymberly’s openness is one of the qualities that makes her perfect to connect with others…and their dreams for a brighter future.

 

How did your new teaching career unfold?

I’d never thought of being a teacher before and I was not looking for a job. But during that lunch I was invited to visit their Medical Assisting program’s class and do a Phlebotomy demonstration for students. It was very natural to be with students, and they understood what I was trying to explain to them.

I realized I could pass the baton to a new generation of medical providers at the very beginning of their careers.

 

What do you hope to give students in your Medical Assisting program at Carrington College?

My job is to get (MA program) students to have that passion for patient care; to guide them in the process of becoming the best that they can be. I’m excited to hear their thoughts on what they want to get out of this program so that I can make sure we meet their level of expectations.

 

What was your biggest classroom surprise?

What works for one person may not work for another. I’m a huge believer that there’s always a way to help anybody. We just need to find the right path. I tell students: I will walk with you, but you must meet me half-way. I cannot give it to you. You have to want it, earn it.

In the end they will be able to better handle classroom and career challenges, using critical thinking and problem-solving.

 

What kinds of obstacles stand in the way of student success?

Something always goes wrong. Financial difficulties. Fear of failure or of not getting through the program. So many things want to stop you. I help them push through that wall; reflect on times they overcame it and realize that although it may be difficult, they just need to stay steady.

The best moments are when they realize they did it, they were capable. I see it mostly when they pass their exam at the completion of our 36-week Medical Assisting program. They are just, “Wow! I did it all myself.”

 

How does your background influence the way you provide instruction and support?

I struggled as a child and didn’t get any kind of support. I treat and support people the way I wanted and needed and that, hopefully, gives others an easier path. I remind students that just because it wasn’t there doesn’t mean you can’t believe in it and create it now.

Professionally, I’ve had the opportunity to work in every specialty, except endocrinology, and my heart is with anyone who needs me. My extensive background gives me the chance to be a strong resource to my students.

 

How would you describe your teaching style?

Very interactive. I don’t want someone to tell me they know how to do something; I want them to show me. Ask me a million questions…then I want you to go out and teach it to someone else. We’re a team. Share what you know.

 

What excites you at the front of the class?

That lightbulb moment when they start to really understand. And when they realize that we are, overall, a community and must be there for each other, help each other. They are part of the next generation of health care that is not just a job, but a career and a passion.

 

What do you most hope to give your students?

The love for what they do. I want them to understand that a Medical Assisting career shouldn’t just be for a paycheck and shouldn’t be because you’re better than someone else; it should be out of love and compassion for those in your care. And we want that care to be the way we would care for our own family members.

 

What is it like on the front lines of patient care?

You must buffer your nearness to pain. Every situation is different. Sometimes you get close to a patient; it might even be a family member. But our responsibility is to say to them, ‘I’m going to fight with you; I’m not going to let you go alone.” There must be balance.

 

How can your Medical Assisting program graduates best acclimate to their patient care environments?

Enjoy the time you have with everybody. Even though you may be in a very difficult experience with patients and feel the pain of others, be compassionate. You never know what’s going on in other people’s lives that is a struggle. I’ve seen great outcomes and I’ve seen people who didn’t make it. Make every minute count with whoever is around you…patients, family members, coworkers; stay life aware.

 

What is your greatest inspiration to teach?

I see my students’ capability…even sometimes when they don’t see it. It makes me want to push them because I know they have the potential and can be good at it.

I tell them what I tell my 11-year-old son, who wants to be an astronaut. “If you believe it, you can achieve it!” It only takes that belief. For my son and for my students, it’s going to be hard work, but I’m going to be right by your side.

 

What career and life advice to you offer your students?

I tell them, ‘Some have it, get it or need to find it in themselves’. Why live in the past when you have your whole future. We don’t know what the outcome will be unless we pursue it. And it is never easy.

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