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Day in the Life of a…Member of Culinary Management

276564742527393.rj91P8u8NW2Lf9RZX1g6_height640If you ever wondered where an Associate of Science in Culinary Arts Management can take you, then look no further than Richard L. Blanchette, Jr. The Broward College graduate serves as Director of Food and Nutrition for Memorial Hospital West, where he oversees 70 employees.

A Typical Day Looks Like:

7:30 a.m.

His day begins by making the rounds through the various departments. He checks on the cafeteria and the patient tray line to ensure operations are running smoothly, then the same is done in the production area and catering. Then, there is a brief huddle with supervisors in each place to address any special events or other issues that need further discussion.

9:30 a.m.

Blanchette joins directors from each department of the hospital to go over the patient census, how many patients are on each floor, and the number of discharges and transfers. From there, he approves and reviews spending and invoices, and daily tracking is done for monthly operating reports consisting of data such as cafeteria, catering and the tray line expenses and sales.

Noon – 5 p.m.

Someone in his position is accustomed to frequent meetings. Among them are with the Environmental of Care (EOC) team, discussing things like the temperature of the food.

Blanchette is in regular communication with the executive chef to make sure the cooks are sticking with protocol and following the right recipes. Although the tray line menu is uniformed, the cafeteria menu can be adjusted based on feedback, like adding more Latin flavors to fit the area.

In addition to the administrative parts of his job, Blanchette also adds patient satisfaction to his list of responsibilities, which is why Blanchette visits patient rooms to check how they are doing and offer his services to make their care better. From there, he sends dietitians to do consults and follow up with patients.

Blanchette worked his way up the food service ladder from Duffy’s Sports Grill to Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church. He moved into healthcare, starting at Jackson Memorial as executive chef where he was responsible for feeding thousands of people daily. He then moved on to University Hospital and Medical Center where he was the director of food and nutrition before transitioning to Memorial. Through his career, Blanchette found a degree not only looked great on a resume, but helped him stand out from other candidates in the industry who hadn’t received a degree. Blanchette just returned to Broward College, this time to pursue a Bachelor of Applied Science in Supervision and Management.

“You have to put in the time; learn everything,” Blanchette recommends. “Learn what people do. Find a good mentor. With the partnership between Broward College and the technical centers, there is really a good program to put you on the right track.”

If Blanchette made you hungry for a career in this field, check out the Broward College program in the AS in Culinary Arts Management.











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Day in the Life of…a Medical Assistant

It’s 8 a.m., and there is a quiet inside Quality Women’s Care at Memorial Hospital West in Pembroke Pines. Ana Herrera, decked in blue scrubs, prepares an examining room inside the OB/GYN (Obstetrics and Gynecology) office for an incoming patient. She hangs up a gown and lays out instruments the doctor will use for a Pap smear.

IMG_2392A colposcopy also is scheduled, so she must set up an area with iodine, tubes and necessary instruments for the biopsy of another patient. Herrera, a graduate from the medical assisting certificate program at Broward College, anticipates a busy day right up until 5 p.m., but the mother of three wouldn’t have it any other way, welcoming those sitting in the waiting room with a smile.

A Medical Assistant is a Key Player

Herrera turned an internship into a full-time job at the OB/GYN office. There she plays a pivotal role when it comes to patient care. As a medical assistant Herrera is one of the first points of contacts with the patients, so she tries to ease concerns and helps them feel comfortable with her friendly face. This isn’t always easy considering she is often the one poking them and taking their blood.

Speaking of taking blood, she is responsible for more than just emotional support to patients including taking blood, performing injections on a regular basis, handling lab ordering on behalf of the doctors, helping perform in-office procedures, and even sending out prescriptions to the pharmacy. Herrera will also provide scripts for mammograms and ultrasounds that go to the hospital and radiology.

With all the exciting parts of her job, she does warn those interested in pursuing the occupation to be ready to do paperwork...lots of paperwork. Herrera is thankful that documents including charts are easily accessible electronically.

Possibilities Are Endless  

There are many avenues one can take in medical assisting, and OB/GYN among them. Therefore, specific responsibilities may vary. Herrera felt confident to perform her job functions thanks to the foundation and 275657771182378.0kLuLuSbdfsZnZiEa6NS_height640education she received at Broward College.

“It’s well-rounded at BC, so once you come out into the job market, you are ready,” she said. “My tip would be to remain flexible and open to learn the new developments in the field. Broward College teaches you the basics, but it’s important to learn as much as you can once you enter a specialty. Other than that, you will be prepared for a rewarding career.”

What do you do if you’re interested?

As you can tell, medical assistants play a crucial part of the daily operations of healthcare facilities. There also is a growing need to fill positions due to an aging population and continual technological advances. So if Herrera’s recount gets you excited about medical assisting, find out more about the Broward College program, which can be completed in only 10 months.

The Job Shadow tool within the Career Center website is a great tool to explore hundreds of career videos and more.




Faculty Member Looks Back at Trip to Annual National Collegiate Honors Council Conference

Tai Houser, PhD., recently ventured to the “Emerald City” of Seattle to present at the annual National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) Conference. The English professor and Broward College Faculty Senate President was privileged to represent Broward College, along with others from the institution. The conference brings together directors, deans, faculty, staff and students for an exchange of ideas.

Here Houser looks back on his memorable experience:

“For academics, as for other professionals, attending conferences is a vital part of our work. It allows us to engage with other experts, energize our spirits, and explore the nuances of our disciplinary, pedagogical, and professional passions. I was pleased to represent Broward College and the Robert ‘Bob’ Elmore Honors College at the annual meeting of the National Collegiate Honors Council. This is one of my favorite conferences and I’ve been attending, first as Honors director and currently as Honors faculty, for several years.

counciltrip5Working with colleagues from James Madison University and Northern Virginia Community College, I discussed best practices in transfer and articulation between two-year and four-year programs. The session was well attended.

Among the 50 or so guests was the current Honors Director, Quakish Liner, and our previous Honors Director, Dr. Sheila Jones.

How fun to have all three of us in the same room! The audience was especially excited to hear about how our ‘LINK to FAU’ program has students working with FAU advisors while attending Broward College, and how our FIU relationship allows students to have an FIU ID in order to access services at the university. Some younger program directors were eager to implement their own version of our practice of helping Honors students transfer to four-year programs by sending letters of recommendation from the Honors director along with the student application — and the success we see in that letter helping students secure scholarships.

Conferences are also about learning. In fact, it’s the best way to keep up with the state of our art. I was able to attend some exciting sessions and learn about the explosion of Honors programs happening outside of the United States, specifically in Europe, and the increasing practice of offering Honors study abroad programs. Clearly, the Broward College Robert ‘Bob’ Elmore Honors College was at the forefront of offering Honors abroad. I was able to share how I worked with our international partners to offer Honors certificates to our students earning a degree from the College in South America and Asia. And many of our college partners were excited to learn about our spring counciltrip4break study abroad trip for Honors college students.

Because NCHC is such a large organization, the meeting requires the resources offered by a large city. This year, Seattle proved to be just as engaging as the conference. From the City as Text experience offered by NCHC, to the famous Pike Place Market, Space Needle, museums, and fine restaurants, we were never without options of things to do in the evenings. Of course, I saw Mount Rainier from the Space Needle, enjoyed an amazing Mediterranean-style dinner with the Broward College crew at Sareavo Restaurant (complete with flaming cheese), and an intimate, locally sourced luncheon.

Throughout my years of activity in the NCHC, the Southern Regional Honors Council — where I sit on the Board of Directors — and among my colleagues at the College, I have formed some exciting professional and personal friendships. I know that I can call on people at major research institutions, folks at liberal arts colleges, friends from community colleges, and co-workers at Broward College to find a support network and engage in mutual academic pursuits to help students succeed at Broward and transfer into strong four-year institutions.”

For more information on the Honors College, visit Link to: http://www.broward.edu/academics/honors/Pages/default.aspx.