Instructor, San Antonio - San PedroChad

“I’m 42 years old, and I’ve been in the healthcare field since I was 19. I never even knew I wanted to be in healthcare until I left home. I saw an advertisement, signed up on Monday and started classes on Wednesday. That was 20-something years ago.


I came from a really small high school, so we had a lot of one-on-one interaction. Later, I moved into more of a college setting where it was 30-to-1 in labs, so it’s a lot to get used to and try to grow into. I believed that helped me on the education side because I was there. I bring that into the classroom, and I tell them all the time, ‘Guys, I’ve been exactly where you are.’ The students respect it and look at it as real-world experience.

It’s nice to get up and come to work but then enjoy your job, too. Coming here every day is my family away from my family. If you have a classroom that gives them that acceptance where they know this is a safe zone, they’re going to come to school. You have to have an inviting atmosphere for them to come to. I’m very strict about certain things, but other things I’m very relaxed on. Time management is a huge deal for me, and I make them very accountable for their time, and they know that. I run my classroom like a job. They have to be accountable for their time. When I set expectations, they try to exceed them.

“I run my classroom like a job. They have to be accountable for their time.”

Our students might have never had a mother figure or a father figure. Maybe they’ve never been taught basic skills, so they rely on me to be that person. Explaining certain things to them like time management, balancing your budget. They are going to be professionals at some point, so you need to teach them how to roll into that professional mode, and give them that extra boost that sets them away from the rut they’ve been in.

It’s hard to see students giving up on themselves. We work really, really hard on retention. Knocking on people’s doors, calling them in the morning to make sure they’re not going to be late to school. We, as instructors, try and build internal relationships with students as far as carpooling, study groups, back-up babysitter plans, things like that, to make sure each one of them becomes successful. And when they give up, we don’t.

“The minute you wake up and you’re content and happy, you’re successful.”

The greatest day of my life is whenever I watch them cross the stage. It’s just neat to see the self-esteems that are built. Some of these students are the first ones who graduated from a secondary education. The first couple of years after I started I thought, ‘This is fun.’ Then it turned into more than fun, it turned into goals. I want to make sure that they all achieve better for themselves. I love helping them and instructing them and bringing my knowledge back into it. We have a great reputation out in the field; we have a lot of providers that will call the externship department. It feels good that we have students out there in the field that are representing our industry.

One of my big sayings is, ‘Never look back on what you left, but only keep walking toward the things you want.’ I tell my students all the time that the minute you start walking forward, you have to keep walking, because when you look back to see what you’re missing out on, you’re going to trip and fall. I don’t care how many people are screaming behind you, they’re screaming because they’re scared because you’re becoming successful. The louder they get, the better you’re going to be in life. Your friends and family who want you to stay where you’re at in life are going to scream the loudest because they’re afraid that you’re going to be successful and leave them. Once you cross that stage, you become a success. And that gate closes, and you have the key. And you can open it and bring your family with you.

The minute you wake up and you’re content and happy, you’re successful. It’s not a car in your garage, it’s not the roof over your head, it’s being able to wake up and be happy with what you are and who you are and what you’re doing at that time.”

We’re in this togetherRead More of Our Stories

Cassi, Nashville“I was working a sales job that I absolutely hated, and I realized that I needed to start a career.”

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Olga, San Antonio - San Pedro“I was putting my passion on the backburner and trying to please everybody else.”

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Richard, Nashville“I’ve got to give my children something to look at so that they feel proud of me.”

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Are you a Brightwood College student, graduate or staff member?We’d love to hear your story!

“No matter what difficulties you face in life there is always hope. Tomorrow is another day with new opportunities. Love life, love people, love yourself. You are worth it.”

Amber, Modesto Student

“I am motivated by my students who are enrolled to make a better life for themselves and their families. It motivates me watching them overcome many life obstacles and cross that finish line and graduate. The strength of my students is amazing!”

Marianne, Fort Worth Staff Member

“I enjoy watching students evolve and become responsible, hard-working individuals.”

Kendra, Fort WorthStudent Finance Support Specialist

“My proudest moment was the first day I walked into class and found my place in life.”

Catherine, Fort Worth Student

“How can I make a difference today? That’s my daily question. Coming from circumstances that shaped me into who I am today, I want to give back in a way most of us truly need.”

Kimberly, Fort WorthCareer Development Specialist

“My motivation comes from seeing my students succeed.”

Pamela, HammondSenior Admissions Representative

“I make it my mission to create a campus culture of family and a sense of belonging. We know our students' names, we know their stories, we know what makes them smile. We listen to our students, and we recognize them for changing their life and making it happen!”

Shaheen, Fort Worth Staff Member

“Always follow your dreams even if it seems as if you could never accomplish them. Nothing is impossible!”

Gisselle, Las Vegas Student

“I always wanted to go back to school but it seemed impossible working full-time and taking care of four children. My kids are the reason I chose this field. They have a lot of problems with their teeth, and after so many treatments, I found out this career is very interesting.”

Mirla, Indianapolis Student

“I have worked in Career Development for over five years and still have the same passion for helping our students as I did on day one. Improving the outlook of someone's life motivates me.”

Athenai, Fort Worth Staff Member

“I loved my careeer in healthcare. Now I love passing on the knowledge and real-world experiences to my students.”

Margie, Fort Worth Instructor

“My children are my world, and I want them to see their mom as a successful person.”

Guadalupe, Modesto Student

“I realized that college parties, the traditional classroom setting, and being far from home was not for me. I knew I wanted to continue with a career path that would help people and benefit society.”

Natalie, Indianapolis Student

“If I can’t be in the Marine Corps anymore and protecting my country, I might as well be protecting people from something else — bad teeth!”

Audrey, Vista Student

“I needed to do something hands-on and slightly behind the scenes. So I chose pharmacy technician. The job I am doing is a perfect fit for me.”

Bright, San Antonio - San Pedro Graduate

“I proved to myself that obstacles do come your way, but when you have your mind set on what you want you will achieve it. I’m now a dental assistant!”

Paula, Corpus Christi Graduate

“I endeavor to remind students that life will happen with or without your personal satisfaction. Do something worthwhile. Do something you love.”

Terra, Fort Worth Dean

“My daughter motivates me every single day. I want the best future for her. I want to show her anything is possible and to go after your goals.”

Jazmine, Fort Worth Student

“I know what it’s like to lose everything then work hard to make a good life for myself and my children. It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish. It’s not who you are, it’s who you can become.”

Melody Ann, Hammond Student Finance Supervisor

“My parents are both immigrants. Being the first in my family to go to college has made my parents proud.”

Leonor, Vista Student

“Students motivate me every day. A chance to speak to them and show them that they do have a chance is extremely rewarding to me.”

Elizabeth, Fort WorthStudent Finance Support Specialist

“My children motivate me. Their father died when they were 7 and 11. Now I must provide a life for them on my own.”

Rachel, Dayton Graduate

“I get to help students take that next step and push themselves to be more than they thought they could.”

Joe, El Paso Career Development Specialist

“My kids and my grandkids motivate me. I want them to be able to know, no matter your age or situation, never give up on your dreams.”

Yvonne, Dayton Student

“No matter what may ever happen to you in life, you can pull yourself out.”

Brittany, NashvilleStudent

“The proudest moment of my life was when I had my first interview and they offered me the job. I am happy with the place, and I love my job!”

Mariana, Charlotte Graduate

“Having three small children hasn't always been easy, but striving to make sure they are secure is what drives me.”

Audreyona, IndianapolisStudent

“I help students take the leap every day. The difference is that I refuse to let them fall. I believe in their success!”

Latanya, CharlotteAdmissions Representative

“I have always been in love with the dental field.”

Tyshawna, Indianapolis Student

“I chose the medical field because I want to be able to help people. You have to have a good heart and a lot of patience to work in this field.”

Monica, CharlotteStudent

“As a first-generation American, first-generation college graduate, and having been a young parent, I am motivated to help my students, many of whom share a similar life experience.”

Alex, Chula Vista Campus President

“I was afraid because I have been out of school for a very long time and was doubting myself, but I knew I needed to go back to school.”

Kimberly, Indianapolis Student

“I chose the Medical Assistant program because I love to help people move forward.”

Rosetta, Fort Worth Student

“It has taken me three tries and three different schools to find a place that I enjoy and a career field I love.”

Anna, Friendswood Student

“You have to believe in yourself and believe that you are worth it every step of the way.”

Stephanie, Fort WorthInstructor

“Technology has always interested me, as well as taking things apart and putting them back together.”

Cory, El Paso Instructor

“I came to the United States searching for a future with my husband and two little boys. I wasn't sure how I was going to speak another language or where to start seaching for a job. I learned the language and got more confident about myself, but I felt like I was incomplete. I needed a career.”

Leslie, Laredo Graduate

“No matter how hard my circumstances were, I never gave up.”

Taviona, Riverside Graduate