Free tuition is available to 26 Hawai‘i residents entering Kapi‘olani Community College’s medical assisting program through a partnership with The Queen’s Health Systems. Recipients will gain valuable work experience at The Queen’s Medical Center, while going to school. Those who complete the 12-month program will be eligible to earn a University of Hawai‘i certificate of achievement in medical assisting.
“Man, I wish they had this paid tuition program when I was going to KCC!” said Alayna Jansson, a certified medical assistant working at The Queen Emma Clinic.
Prospective students must apply for the Physician Practice Assistant Intern position at Queen’s – Punchbowl, job number 123500. The deadline to apply is June 10, 2019. Queen’s will nominate candidates from the pool of job applications received. The Queenʻs contact person for the program is Kim Trujillo at (808) 691-8049.
Applicants who meet Kapi‘olani CC’s admissions criteria and qualifications will enter the medical assisting program and receive free tuition. Students are responsible for their own books and student activity fees. During the year-long program that starts on August 26, 2019, they will take classes at Kapi‘olani CC and earn while they learn by working 16 hours per week at Queen’s in a modified physician practice assistant role.
“We are excited to be working with Queens in this new partnership that will increase the number of well trained certified medical assistants in the workforce. said Lynn Hamada, Kapi‘olani CC’s medical assisting program director. “At the end of this one-year program, students will earn college credits and a Certificate of Achievement, qualify to take the gold-standard national certification exam for the Certified Medical Assistant (American Association of Medical Assistants) credential and be able to transition seamlessly into the associate in science degree program should they decide to continue their education at Kapi’olani Community College.”
Medical assistants in demand
Medical assistants work with physicians in private medical offices and clinics, and hospital outpatient clinics. They assist with patient care, routine lab and diagnostic tests, and administrative and business procedures.
“There is a growing need for medical assistants and physician practice assistants in the community,” said Jason Chang, COO of The Queen’s Health Systems. “Queen’s is committed to developing the talent and providing the financial assistance, training and experience to help them succeed.”
Kapi‘olani CCʻs Health Apprenticeship Director Sally Pestana added, “Kapi‘olani CC has a long and strong collaboration history with Queen’s in over a dozen healthcare education programs. We are looking forward to this new partnership for our medical assisting program that will provide highly skilled new medical assistants for Queen’s healthcare teams.”
Jansson graduated from the Kapi‘olani CC medical assisting program in 2016.
“Being a part of the program is like having a full-time job,” she said. “It was a lot of hard work—reading, studying, medical terminology—but it was an amazing experience. It takes quite a bit of dedication, but that’s important because you’re going to be taking care of people someday.”