Student Story: Starting a new career in healthcare
Gina Meyer’s interest in healthcare began at a young age. She suffered from seizures as a child, which complicated the management of her ADHD from a medical perspective. “I couldn’t take any [medication],” she explains. “I kind of had to figure out how to get through school without anything.” She persisted and earned an associate degree in human services, graduating with honors.
After working in assisted living for several years, Gina was hired by a large retailer, and quickly ascended to a managerial role, overseeing the dairy department at her store. While proud of her career advancement, she wanted to learn more about medicine, and to leverage that knowledge —along with her own experiences— to help people.
A colleague brought her attention to her employer’s education benefit, and she realized that she could earn a pharmacy technician career diploma without taking on any debt. She jumped at the opportunity and recently earned her full CPhT certification, having completed a successful 160-hour pharmacy externship.
Gina is now a pharmacy technician, where she assisted with her pharmacy’s effort to administer COVID-19 vaccines to hundreds of members of her community. She’s earning better pay, and her interactions with customers present daily opportunities to exercise her technical skills alongside her empathy.
I’m on medication and I know how important it is. Being able to help be a part of somebody’s better living, it makes you feel good. When someone tells you, ‘This medicine’s really helping, I’m glad I’m on it… —It’s so different from stocking shelves and selling milk. I’m able to help other people, and it feels really good.”