Career Step Graduate Review: Kim Wozniak
Hello, my name is Kimberley Wozniak and I reside in Wilmington, NC, with my sweet husband, Bob. I am a mom to 3 wonderful adult kids and am also blessed to have 5 grandchildren and 3 little great-grandchildren. I am a graduate of the Career Step Medical Transcription and Editor Program.
In June of 2011, the company I worked for closed. I was 54 years old and had some physical limitations. I had to figure out what to do for future employment. I had worked over 30 years in manufacturing and I was ready for a change. When I graduated from high school, I really wanted to be a nurse because I love helping people. I was not very fond of science and when I tested for college my assessment exam stated I would make a great auto mechanic! At any rate, I decided maybe nursing was not what I was meant to do. When pondering my new career choices, I felt that doing medical transcription just might be my answer for a perfect job. I would be helping people, I wouldn’t have to be on my feet all day, and my job could travel with me wherever my computer was.
I dove right into the program. I had aspirations of being able to complete it quickly. I knew it would be hard, but I was going to give it my best shot. I started school in November 2011. My goal at the time was 6 months to completion. Well 6 months rolled around and I was nowhere close to being done. I was diligent and determined to persevere. School became my full-time job. When I felt discouraged, I would check the forums and realize I was not the only one struggling. When it was time to take the final, I gave it my best shot. It was February 2013. I passed the Objective with 93% but missed the Practicum by just 1%, so I took the final 2 more times. I did lots of reports and got lots of editor feedback. It was hard work. I remained diligent, and I passed the course in early May. I could not have passed without the help of Mary Louise in Skills Assessment. I really wanted to get honors or high honors, but I missed those marks.
Right after I graduated, I plunged into the job search. I wrote my resume and submitted it for review by Career Step and tweaked it some more. I read the tutorials in Placement Direct and used all of the other tools provided. First, I went through the Employer List for companies that hire for employee status. Some companies require grads with honors or high honors, so I skipped over them. Then I started on the list for ICs and looked at Monster.com, MT jobs.com, and a lot of other sites. With every company, I studied their website and customized my resume and cover letter. I tested whenever I could. Some companies disqualified me before I even tested. Some didn’t respond so I had to follow up. By now it was mid-June and I had sent out over 80 resumes. I had made this job search a full-time job! I was SO discouraged.
Finally, I found a job! Full-time IC with VERSIO by ScribeRight! I have now been working as an MT independent contractor for just over 2 weeks and I LOVE it! This is the best job ever! During the interview process with my team leader, she kept telling me how this company really likes to give Career Step graduates a shot as they are so well trained and they become great transcriptionists. The requirements for this company are 800 lines per day. I am not quite there yet, but my speed and accuracy increase each day. I am assigned dictators. I pull from a pool, and every report I type goes through a QA filter. There is always someone available to answer questions. During my first week of work I was out of state, visiting family. Talk about portability! My TL tells me she sees me progressing more quickly than most new hires. I should be off filter in the next few weeks, and then I can make my own hours as long as I make my quota. The company also has incentive programs if you are consistent with production and quality.
I want to encourage everyone who has not taken the final yet or is currently seeking employment to keep on fighting the fight! Make sure to use all of the resources that Career Step offers to help you make it work: the forums, Graduate Services, etc. Just remember, sometimes things do not happen as quickly as we would like, but we must keep putting our best foot forward. I never gave up and now I have the most flexible, rewarding and meaningful job of my life. You can do it, too!