Dana Riddick-Jackson began her career at Pennsylvania Hospital (PAH) in 1996 as a Patient Service Representative (PSR) assigned to greet and register patients coming to the Women’s Clinic for their care.
"Going back to school was not in my plans then," she said, probably because her schedule was busy with work and sharing her life with her husband and three active boys.
Fast forward to 2006. Dana is now working as a Billing Coordinator in the OB/GYN Department at PAH and is being encouraged by her mother, her family and her supervisor, Lisa Mills, to consider going to back to school.
At the same time. the Health System began a partnership with the Community College of Philadelphia (CCP) to create a new PSR Certificate program that offers employees 18 college credits that can be applied to a CCP Associates Degree. The fact that these courses are offered on-site at many Penn Medicine locations and are covered by the employee Education Benefit Program provided Dana a strong incentive to return to learning … and she did.
“I knew that obtaining a PSR Certificate would help me be more successful in my career at Penn Medicine,” she said. And there was a concomitant benefit for her as well. “Going back to school helped me at work but also helped me to become a more self-confident life partner with my husband and a more informed mother to my children.”
What did Dana like about the PSR program at CCP? “It was just so convenient to attend classes on-site, to have all my expenses covered by my tuition benefit, and to have the support that I received from CCP,” she said. “It was just wonderful… a blessing.”
Now, several years later, taking just one course at a time, Dana is just a few courses away from completing the requirements for her associates degree in 2011 and she already plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in management at Temple in 2012.
Dana’s advice for employees thinking about returning to learning.” Go now, don’t put it off,” she said. “It is not as difficult as it might sound and it can change your life, like it did mine.”