Meet MA Graduate Lucy Vang

Lucy Vang, MA Grad

Lucy Vang figures, in some ways, she already had been on the job for quite some time before making the decision to officially become a Medical Assistant (MA).

"I've always been my family's Medical Assistant," said Vang, a wife, and mother of three. As a first-generation Hmong American, she had always found herself assisting her family and relatives with bridging the language gap. "I helped them fill out paperwork when they had to go to the doctor, school conferences, translate letters and help my grandparents with their medications."

For Vang, filling out paperwork during her family's doctor visits was a logical extension of her profession at the time - as an administrator for a large business services and printing company in Portland, Ore. It was an occupation she knew she didn't want to be in for the long run.

"It just wasn't where I wanted to go," she said.

Making a change to Medical Assistant

On a Wednesday, Vang remembers, she decided to go down to her local Concorde Career College - Portland campus, where she initially intended to check out its Medical Office Assistant program.

"The counselor I spoke to said, the way I carried myself, I was not going to be a good fit for that program," she said. "I was told I was more of a people person, and that I'd be happier working directly with patients than in the background doing administrative stuff."

That led Vang to the Medical Assistant program. But, before she committed, the counselor had one more task for Vang to complete.

Family most important

"The counselor asked me to first call my husband," she said. "Home life mattered to them, and it was important that my family knew what was coming."

"My husband was up for it. That was Wednesday. I started classes Friday evening."

What followed were eight months of intensive, accelerated learning and training that Vang said fully prepared her for a career as an MA. At the end of her program, she performed an externship with Legacy Medical Group, applied to its resource pool, and was hired there full-time one month after graduating in May 2015.

She passed her one-year anniversary with Legacy earlier this year and said she never dreamed she'd be where she is today.

"Concorde was one of my best vehicles that helped me gain the confidence I needed to change my life," Vang said. "To say thank you doesn't seem enough."

Words weren't enough

So, Vang didn't "say" it. Instead, she wrote a letter with the heading, To My Concorde Family. In it, she shared the celebration of her one-year anniversary "with a wealth of people who truly cared about my accomplishments and my future."

Another excerpt ...

"You have been a part of a journey in my life that opened up my eyes to the endless possibilities of what I could do for myself, my family and the lives I may change tomorrow. I want you to know that you have impacted me in a powerful and purposeful way."

Vang goes on to list a number of the committee positions and leadership roles she's assumed at Legacy, largely because of the ways her Concorde training motivated her.

"I'm so happy I can conquer every day and any challenge with a mindset that I am physically and mentally able to help all these people I come in contact with every day," she said. "It all started with a vision, a will, and Concorde."

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