Meet Concorde MA Graduate LaToya Boswell

medical assistant

LaToya Boswell exudes enthusiasm, determination and a joy of life with every pore of her body and soul. A graduate last summer in the Medical Assistant program at Concordes campus in Southaven, Miss., Boswell was a perfect case study in perseverance, completing her course while navigating a minefield of personal challenges that would've sidelined most.

"When I first inquired about going to Concorde, I had no idea if I could actually be successful," she said.

Difficult home life

Boswell was working in the legal profession a couple of years ago. But she saw her life falling apart around her. She was at the beginning of separation and divorce. Then she, along with an elderly and disabled mother and children which included a mentally-challenged son, was evicted from their home. They were circumstances that would've crushed many.

Instead, Boswell chose to look ahead.

"I needed something new and rewarding," she said. "On the brink of a divorce, homelessness, and no support while having to care for my daughter, my mentally-challenged son and an elderly and disabled mother, I decided to enroll anyway."

Boswell said the first 20 days in medical assistant's training was the hardest. She is an only child, so her support circle was small. One of the most difficult challenges was finding someone to care for her son while she was in class. She finally did and said, once she got her family settled into a new apartment, things started going more smoothly.

"I got nestled into working during the day and attending classes at night," she said. "Some days were harder than others. My son's ability to do things grew more and more challenging. I often had to find time at work to complete homework, because I was helping him with his at home."

"I had to find a way to balance it all out."

Excelling in Medical Assistant training

Boswell didn't just graduate from Concorde - Southaven's MA program, she thrived. She was a Lamplighter during her tenure, received perfect attendance all four terms and was honor roll all four terms. Boswell was Student of the Term for two terms, Student Helping Student two terms and designated the hardest worker two terms. She also received pins for several honors, the most cherished of course being her graduation pin. She graduated with highest honors.

"I was so proud of myself," she said. "I didn't think I could do it, but there I was walking across the stage with the highest honors the school had to offer."

Boswell said she passed her licensing exam on Dec. 2.

Giving thanks

There were a lot of people who gave Boswell a helping hand as she proceeded through her Medical Assistant program, but two stood out. Kasey Lemmons in the Admissions office gave Boswell a shoulder to lean on during difficult times. Instructor Toren Bowen offered words of encouragement and guidance during her early classes.

"(Lemmons) was the support I needed, to talk, to scream and to cry," she said. "People say they are there for you all the time, but Kasey showed it."

"(Bowen) always went out of her way to make sure we had what we needed for a test or exam. Or, to just offer words of encouragement and prayer."

Boswell, ever thankful, ever hopeful and optimistic, said she hopes her story inspires others to follow their dreams and achieve their goals.

"I hope whoever reads this will find there is hope in all situations and never give up," she said.

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