Meet Niki Saunders – Asher College Graduate
“If I can do this, anyone can do this.” Those are the words of Asher College success story Niki Saunders. Niki began attending Asher in 2014 and graduated with an Associate of Applied Science degree in Medical Billing and Coding in September 2015.
Niki had previously worked in administrative and office positions for various organizations, including the New York Stock Exchange and a mortgage company. With the market crash, she knew she needed to embark on a different career. She interviewed various educational institutions and after much thought decided on Asher College.
Niki took the time to speak on her experiences.
Why did you choose Asher College?
I chose Asher because of the location, the hours, the teachers and the schedule. They don’t have a strict 8 to 5 or 7 to 3 schedule like a lot of the other schools. Their scheduling is much more flexible. I also was impressed by the people that I met and the programs that they offer.
How did you feel starting a new school?
I was nervous, extremely nervous knowing that I was going to start my third career in my late 40’s; knowing that I was going to start all over again. I called and visited Asher three or four times before my start date. Then the day before I was supposed to start class, I called them and told them I didn’t think that I could do it and that I was going to be backing out. I was scared.
They were very supportive. They said they understood my fears and they talked me through it and told me they would do everything in their power to help me succeed and that I would make it through. They said they would back me any which way they could. And they did just that. Knowing they were supportive and behind me made such a difference.
Tell me about your experience at Asher College.
It was extremely positive and upbeat. Everyone was happy and smiling. If you had a down day and sat in a corner in the back of the class, the students and the teachers would make sure you were ok. I’ve seen professors actually call students who didn’t show up to class and make sure they were ok. They would ask if they needed anything. I don’t think there is enough that I can say positively about the staff at Asher. They are a success in their own right. They picked outstanding, fabulous people to work at Asher. I think they need to be applauded and recognized.
What makes Asher unique from other colleges?
Aside from the phenomenal staff and the flexible schedule, I think the career classes and services. At the beginning of your education they make you take a career success course. During this course you learn about other students and their fears and experiences. It really makes you realize that you share a lot of these feelings with other students and that you are not alone.
What are your plans for the future?
I currently work for the Center for Sight, an ophthalmology company in town. I did an externship and about a month ago they offered me a full-time position. I absolutely love it. I am a commercial AR coordinator and I do a lot of the incoming and outgoing billing and they are preparing me for coding.
I am currently studying for my Certified Professional Coder and Certified Professional Billing exams. And I look forward to going on and getting my bachelor’s degree.
Would you recommend Asher?
Absolutely. Looking back it was not easy but it was the best thing I could have done for myself. The staff are such givers and they go above and beyond to make sure that they help every student that they can. They say at the beginning that they will be there to help you succeed and they do it. I would never have known about the internship if it wasn’t for them. I wouldn’t be where I am without them.