Medical assistant and medical billing and coding programs are thriving thanks to an enthusiastic approach
When Branford Hall’s Amityville, New York campus completed its transition into a new building on November 4, 2013, the location had an enrollment of only 39 students. A little over a year and a half later, that campus has increased its enrollment to approximately 300. It’s an astonishing turnaround, the kind that begs the question, “How exactly did they do it?”
According to long-time Campus Director – and 15-year Branford Hall veteran – Sally Ramos, the difference can be attributed to what trickles down from several of Amityville’s dedicated instructors. “I don’t mean to sound boastful,” Ramos explains, “but our administrators here are so passionate. What you see in the students, it’s a reflection of what these instructors bring to the table.”
Ramos is referring to an academic environment based on mutual respect. The students aren’t only at Amityville to learn; administrators also intend for them to enjoy what they’re doing. The culture has become such that, according to Ramos, recurring visitors to the campus tend to refer to it as “The Happy Place” – an atmosphere where give-and-take has created positive results for everybody involved.
The writing’s on the wall
The corridors inside Amityville’s main classroom building are lined with accolades from students who have graduated in the past. There are more than a dozen framed letters from local doctors who have employed Branford students, allowing them to complete their externships.
“In all my years as a practice manager, I have rarely been this impressed with a medical assistant extern,” one letter affirms. “Stephanie is an excellent worker and we would like to hire her as an employee once her externship is complete,” another one reads.
A wall along Amityville’s administrative wing displays thank-you notes from well-known charities and non-profits, each of them acknowledging the volunteer efforts of Branford students. Just beyond the reception area, sprawling corkboards tout all the places where recent graduates are currently employed.
A lot of students in the medical billing and coding courses pass a body-length mirror on the way to their classes. This mirror is accompanied by a bright-blue banner overhead. “Would You Hire This Person?” the banner asks. It’s one of several reminders to Amityville students that they aren’t only enrolled to attend classes, but to attain a certain level of professionalism along the way.
One eye on the future
This month, Branford’s Amityville campus will hold its first official cap-and-gown graduation since moving into the new location. Director Ramos explains that she wanted to hold off on a major ceremony until there was a significant-sized class. With a little under 200 students preparing for commencement, Ramos points out that enrollment at Branford’s Amityville campus has never been higher.
In that spirit, even as Director Ramos is congratulating Amityville graduates on successfully completing their programs, she and her team will be preparing to welcome a fresh new class of students in the weeks and months ahead.