Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Medical and Legal Administrative Professional Certificates prepare students for growing job market

The Office Technology Program (OTEC) at Ohio University-Chillicothe is offering Medical and Legal Administrative Professional certificate programs that prepare students for careers in the growing health-care and legal administrative assistant fields. The cross-disciplinary programs began this summer for medical certificates, and the legal certification program will begin this fall.

Between 2008 and 2018 the growth for medical administrative assistant careers is expected to be 27 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook 2010-11 Web site. The legal administrative assistant career is projected to increase 18 percent during this same period. According to the Web site, employers of executive secretaries are increasingly seeking candidates with college degrees for these types of positions. It also notes that having a degree related to a particular industry can give a job-seeker an advantage in seeking employment.
“These certificates bring together the general office skills and technology of the OTEC program with an emphasis on medical or legal procedures, terminology, and software in response to current market demands,” OU-C OTEC Program Coordinator Allison White said. “The classes are designed to give students the insights and skills they need to succeed as administrative assistants in a medical or legal environment.”
“The classes teach professionalism, confidentiality, research skills, statistics, and insurance processes such as coding and medical billing applications. The medical courses offer some clinical aspects so that administrative assistants are able to perform front office and back office duties such as taking vital signs.”
Classroom instruction is provided by individuals who can share relevant experience, with lawyers, paralegals, physicians, nurses, coding specialists, medical/legal secretaries and other practicing professionals serving as guest speakers.

The OTEC program and certificates are ongoing with courses offered throughout the summer and entire academic year. For more information, contact Assistant Professor Allison White at or (740) 774-7256.

“The OTEC program and certificates offer certifications within each course including MCAS (Microsoft Certified Applications Specialists), NSC (National Safety Council) Airborne and Bloodborne Pathogens, and First Aid and CPR (American Red Cross) while also affording students the opportunity to transition into several baccalaureate degrees,” White said.
Individuals can earn the Medical Administrative Professional certification while pursuing an associate degree in Office Technology (OTEC) or other academic degree. Many of the courses complement OTEC offerings.

Medical certificate courses include:
  • Medical Terminology
  • Medical Procedures I
  • Medical Procedures II
  • Clinical Techniques
  • Medical Coding
  • First Aid and CPR
Legal certificate programs include:
  • Legal Terminology
  • Legal Procedures I
  • Legal Procedures II
  • Business Law
  • Procedural Research
  • Criminal Justice Research or Cybernetics and Principles


Monday, July 12, 2010

SOAR sessions are tailored toward success of new OU-C students

OU-C Director of Student Services John Fisher discusses what makes the SOAR orientation sessions so distinctive in regards to preparing students for their college careers in a timely fashion. View the video on the campus’ YouTube channel at

Approximately 60 students took part in the SOAR (Student Orientation, Advising and Registration) student orientation session at Ohio University-Chillicothe on July 9.

The recent SOAR event, which is the second one this summer, is one of five orientation sessions this summer for students who are beginning their college careers fall quarter. Dates of future SOAR sessions this summer are July 23, Aug. 13 and Aug. 27.

“The SOAR student orientation program is designed to help incoming students take the first step toward successful college careers. SOAR events introduce the newest members of the Ohio University-Chillicothe community to the resources and information they need to not only survive, but to thrive, and to make the most of their time on campus,” Director of Student Services John Fisher said.

“We want to set up the incoming students for success before they even step in the classroom,” Manager of Student Recruitment TJ Eveland said. “SOAR offers an invaluable opportunity to put students in a position to succeed in college. We look to anticipate the questions and concerns that are common to incoming students and to provide answers before they encounter challenges.”

Among activities during each one-day session, incoming students meet with academic advisors who help the students establish a class schedule for the upcoming quarter; learn about OU-C’s academic, co-curricular and extra-curricular offerings including student organizations; establish their campus e-mail accounts; tour the campus; receive a campus ID card; check on their financial aid status and more.

At SOAR, students are introduced to what two- and four-year academic majors are offered at OU-C. Also, students are instructed as to what the results of the placement tests mean and what math, English and reading courses the tests indicate they should take.

“SOAR is designed to provide a type of one-stop shopping in preparation for the students’ academic careers,” Coordinator of Student Enrollment Jaime Lowe said. “After completing the session, the new students are ready to attend their first class and hit the ground running.”

SOAR is tailored to OU-C and to the success of its students.

“The program is designed to relieve the apprehension that many new students have and to help them feel confident about their success in college. They have the opportunity to interact with other new students, which helps them realize that others have the same questions and uncertainties as they have. Since many of our students have jobs, we have condensed the activities into a half-day session to best meet their busy schedules,” Lowe said.

Success is largely measured in meeting the expectations of incoming students.

Incoming students Ethan Brill and Carol Higgins, both of Westfall High School, had similar goals for the recent SOAR session. Each was primarily interested in scheduling and gaining an overview of college life at OU-C.

Jamie Carpenter, a Paint Valley High School graduate, enjoyed the SOAR session. “It went really well and very smoothly. I wanted to get my schedule set and find out information about financial aid. The fact that so many people are willing to help made it go so well. It made me feel more comfortable to start classes in the fall. Carpenter plans to major in business management.

“It was up to my expectations, and I feel ready to start classes in the fall,” Waverly High School graduate Bethany Evans said. “It was short, which is a good thing. I would recommend it to other prospective students.” Evans is a nursing major.

“They answered all of my questions and were very patient. They explained everything very well,” said Greenfield McClain High School graduate Kayla Warfield, who plans to major in nursing. “I am very excited to start college here in the fall. I like the atmosphere on campus.”

All faculty and staff are invited to participate in SOAR, and their involvement is crucial to the program’s success.

“The faculty involvement is vital so that incoming students can gain a full understanding of the OU-C educational experience from those who are most centrally involved,” Eveland said, “The sessions are designed to make the best use of campus resources in the most efficient manner. The coordination of individuals from areas across campus ensures that we present the students with the most updated information and that we are consistent in regards to the information we are sharing.”