What causes “brain freeze” when eating ice cream or other cold treats too fast? Admit it, you have always wanted to know why that happens right? I know I have. With today being the first day of summer, and the Northeastern humidity already squeezing beads of sweat out of my forehead, I am sure the local custard stand in every neighborhood is seeing increased business traffic. So watch out. Brain freeze is lurking just around the corner. Waiting to make you ache as you consume your chocolate-vanilla twist with rainbow sprinkles. The nice people at Mother Nature Network have answered the question “what causes brain freeze” in detail in the article linked here. As a future member of the medical field, you’ll need to know the answers to pressing questions like this one.
If you’re just beginning your course of study with the Allen School Online, you may be wondering if you can make it. Perhaps you were forced out of another career path by the economy. Maybe there are people in your life who tell you its a mistake and that you cannot succeed in this new direction. Let me urge you to tell the naysayers and nattering nabobs of negativity to stifle their criticisms. You can do this! Anything that one sets one’s mind to accomplish can be done if the determination and dedication is there. Consider the image at the top of this post. If you had asked people “Is it possible to build a river ON TOP of another river” you would likely have a hard time finding someone who would say it were possible. Yet, engineers and physicists in Germany did this seemingly impossible feat. This demonstrates the potential for success if the will is strong to pursue it. Share these images with anyone in your life who wants to dissuade you from your goal. Click “more” to see the rest of these phenomenal photos. Continue reading…
Dear Editor: I was a straight A student during my training at Allen School and I have excellent skills. I also have a lot of tattoos and piercing. During a workshop at school, we were told to hide tattoos and remove piercing when going on interviews. This makes me feel like a fraud. Isn’t it my right to express myself that way and shouldn’t my qualifications speak for themselves? Printed, Pierced and Puzzled Yes, PPP, you are correct, “the times they are a changin’,” as far as tattoos, piercing, etc. go, and you should be able to express yourself. Whether we like them or not, in today’s society, tattoos and piercing have become commonplace and, as such, many barely raise an eyebrow anymore. That being said, based on the school’s experiences, many medical facilities will not look kindly on visible tattoos and piercing. It’s not worth the chance of screwing up job possibilities to have them visible. That is why we suggest covering them up. Even if they do not prevent you from getting the job, they might hurt your chances in progressing or being promoted. You must remember that the health care field has a particularly conservative culture as evidenced by the uniforms, white coats and so on. Patients may not think you fit the mold of a medical professional when they see you wearing body jewelry or visible tattoos. I know it sounds antiquated, but you made the decision to enter this conservative profession. If you try to go against the grain, you’ll find that standing out this way is not a quality that will be admired. You do, however, have the right to do as you please and it would be stupid to judge your professional abilities because of your body art. But, an employer might have to wonder about your maturity in making the decision to stand out in this particular fashion. However, PPP, If your tattoos and piercing prevent you from landing a job in the health care area, take comfort in knowing that there may be a place for you in a tattoo parlor somewhere [smile!]. The Editor
TOP PERFORMERING GRADUATES Brooklyn JUNE Kereen Beckford Tiffany Benjamin Khrystyne Cutkelvin Narelle Downes Natacha Fenelon Keshia Hosein-Baldwin Shandilier Johnson Diana Joseph Adam Lugo Elizabeth Peralta Yesenia Ramos Rosemarie Simpson-Dobbs Danielle Tarulli Marcelle Thornton Jamill Tineo Valerie Turicik Pamela Valdez Noris White Brooklyn JULY Ethline Baptiste Sheila Cherry Tellesha Gordon Derrick Hinton Jessica Joseph-Louis Christine Knight Landy Lin Romesha Malcolm Patrina Nyack Khrystal Zamora Brooklyn AUGUST Justina Brown Deslyn Francis Edmeris Garcia Crystal Pagan TOP PERFORMERING GRADUATES Queens JUNE Doreen Campbell Andrew Carew Omawattee Cipriana Prenzinna Daniels Patrina Forrester Mercedes Golston Yolanda Gomez Vanessa Jaramillo Chandrawattee Jaundoo Farah Jean-Baptiste Joselyn Lim Michelle Medina Carolina Oviedo Contraceptive Methods Monica Pineda-Carchi Denise Shields Miasha Smith Gladys Amelia Summers Lovern Wilson Queens JULY Jessica Padilla Daisyamma Samuel Julian Dawkins Dana Edwards Shaunte Sherrod Donna Jureidini Angela Persaud Hajira Malik Queens AUGUST Tanisha Lennon Lillian Gonzalez Moheni Mangra Creavalle Renetta Balkaran Ragida Cheikhali Loretta Harrison Vanessa Shaw
ALLEN SCHOOL STAFF MEMBER COOKS UP A GREAT RECIPE TO BENEFIT CHARITY It started out as potentially a minor event, holding a luncheon on the Jamaica, New York campus of the Allen School to raise money for Breast Cancer. It picked up momentum in the most remarkable manner and took on a life of its own. What began as an idea in the mind of a single inspired individual morphed into a mega-collaboration involving the recruitment and management of twenty team leaders, the entire staff and student body and a building full of visitors from neighboring businesses and offices. In only a couple of hours early this summer – and then again a few weeks later – charging only $3 for a full plate of home-cooked international delicacies, cooked and brought in by Allen School’s diverse student body, more than $1,707 combined was raised for the cause and the prototype for a regular event was created. The major collaboration that showcased the unity of the student body is the brainchild of Jamaica campus Ambassador Junette Shephard-Wigfall, a licensed security officer and former Bank of New York unit leader who has been with Allen School for a year. Junette, the daughter of a missionary, began the groundswell with an idea to mobilize the ever-charitable Allen School students, many of whom have been dubbed “Blue Angels” in the media due to the color of the Medical Assistant uniform and their enthusiastic and ongoing outreach in service of the community. Junette and Director’s Assistant, Cassandra Regis, also joined together to mobilize the students and staff to participate in the Aids Walk this spring. That effort netted $1,164 and was matched in its entirety by Allen School President Robert Teich, netting a total contribution of $2,328 to the cause. Junette’s initial idea was to hold a multi-cultural luncheon on campus to which the students would bring covered dishes, something that had been done on a small scale at various times in the past. Under her direction, however, it was as if an army had been mobilized. Joined in Junette’s enthusiasm and zeal, was the Dean’s Assistant, Aquiana Von Massenbach, whose part in the collaboration was enhanced by her professional organizational skills. Aquiana, with Allen School for eight months, and in the States for the past two years from the Dominican Republic, drew upon her studies in Business Administration, her time as a buyer for the Timberland Corporation, in the Accounting department of a hotel, and as controller’s assistant in a real estate corporation, to jump right in. A powerful team, Junette and Aquiana made and the level of participation engendered has been immeasurable. Junette’s smile beaming from the front desk daily as she sits greeting visitors, faculty, administrative staff and students, has become synonymous with the project and her ally and powerhouse of a collaborator, Aquiana, is recognized as the other pillar in the ongoing project with Cassandra Regis providing strong support. Allen School is proud of this inspired demonstration of caring and community service and thanks Junette, Aquiana and Cassandra for being selfless role models for future medical professionals of the world. Allen School also thanks all of the participants and guests for being part of such a far-reaching and noble effort. TO SEE ADDITIONAL PHOTOS OF THE LUNCHEON GO TO ALLEN SCHOOL’S FACEBOOK PAGE
IN RECOGNITION OF EXCELLENCE: “The miracle, or the power, that elevates the few is to be found in their industry, application, and perseverance under the promptings of a brave, determined spirit.” Mark Twain TOP PERFORMERS MEDICAL ASSISTANT PROGRAM BROOKLYN CAMPUS GRADUATED JANUARY/FEBRUARY Garcia, Taisha James, Kassianne Marrero , Jenah Matos, Shantaya Meade, Fatina Mills, Denise Ramirez, Leticia Vasquez, Dana Williams, Kerri-Ann Wilson, Janeen MEDICAL ASSISTANT PROGRAM QUEENS CAMPUS GRADUATED JANUARY/FEBRUARY Bautista, Elisha Dane Heron, Renee Levy, Kerone Malchan, Maleesha Shelton, Juliet Singh, Lalieto Zapato, Carol ONLINE MEDICAL INSURANCE BILLING AND CODING PROGRAM GRADUATED JANUARY Brenda Brodowsky Leslie Fuller Sandra Harris Krystal Miller Jacqueline Morales Jamie Scofield
Mai-Ling Colon recently began a new position working with a cardio-thoracic surgeon at New York City’s Mount Sinai Hospital. The position pays $5,000 more per year than her previous position as a Medical Assistant at the [Allen School] internship site at which she was hired after graduating. “The benefits are outstanding” said Mai-Ling about her new position. At the preliminary interview with the office manager and the office clerk at Mount Sinai, Mai-Ling’s experience and caring, professional manner made an impact. She was asked to “hang out and wait for the doctor” to interview her on the same day, rather than return on a second occasion, as is their normal procedure. The doctor hired Mai-Ling on the spot. “We all just sort of ‘clicked’,” said Mai-Ling. “My understanding of the requirements for various procedures and terminology that I got during my eighteen months at Housing Works [her internship site] was very helpful for me during the interview.” Not only was she hired on the spot at Mount Sinai, Mai-Ling shared her unusual story about the interview she had previously for the position at the internship site. On the day of the interview, dressed in a business suit and heels, Mai-Ling found herself sitting for an extended period of time in the waiting room. The clinic had suddenly become very busy. They were short-staffed. Mai-Ling slipped into the flats that she had in her purse and jumped right in to assist. She took vital signs, did Phlebotomy. She photocopied, faxed, filed. She interacted with patients and staff. She spent hours helping them to stem the tide of an onslaught of activity. Ultimately, after things slowed down, Mai-Ling was called into the physician’s office for what she expected to be the interview. Instead, the doctor looked at her smiling and said, “Mai-Ling, I saw you helping everyone here today. I may as well tell you, that was your interview. Welcome aboard!” At the new job at Mount Sinai, Mai-Ling “hit the ground running.” The cardio-thoracic surgeon, affiliated with several other hospitals, asked Mai-Ling to accompany him to them to do Spanish-English translation and handle a variety of clerical and clinical functions, including performing Phlebotomy procedures and taking vital signs. After only three short weeks, he asked her for suggestions on how to improve patient traffic flow and handle the volume of telephone calls he receives from patients at his other hospitals that come in during the work day. Mai-Ling’s valuable suggestions have already been successfully implemented. Speaking in a proprietary manner, as if she had been working with the cardio-thoracic surgeon for years, Mai-Ling said, “I look forward to helping him build his practice and making sure we are one of the busiest practices there.” When asked how she would go about doing that, she replied, “It involves contacting other physicians who need the services we provide, establishing relationships with referring physicians, and building strong relationships with everyone – patients, staff and other professionals.” Mai-Ling excels at building strong relationships. Her instructors and the Dean at Allen School’s Brooklyn campus speak of her with warm regard and admiration. “I loved my time at Allen School,” she said. “All of the instructors went way above and beyond the call of duty, tutoring me when needed, answering my questions – and I asked a lot of them!” “I was greatly influenced by Dr. Surrey [Ian Surrey, MD] and by Dean Jannicelli [Robert Jannicelli, MD]. Every time I stop by to visit or call, they push me to continue my education, Mai-Ling said. “In order to get assistance with continuing my education, I have to be at Mount Sinai for an entire year and then they will help me to do it. Eventually, I plan to carry what I learn into becoming an RN or a Nurse Practitioner.” “I’m going to miss doing more of the clinical work that I was doing at Housing Works because my new job has much more of a clerical focus,” said Mai-Ling, “but I am going to keep my skills fresh by volunteering at Allen School to assist Dr. Surrey on Saturdays as he teaches Phlebotomy and vital signs. I also informed Mount Sinai that I’m available as a volunteer for clinical work.” Named after a character in a Bruce Lee movie by her father, a Kung Fu aficionado, Mai-Ling has been married for seven years to Geronimo, a counselor for mentally disabled adults. They have three children, aged 3, 5, and 14. They are active in their church and love sports. Mai-Ling used to run cross country track and field and played baseball, football and basketball. Allen School congratulates Mai-Ling Colon on her advancement in the medical field, her success with interviews and what is truly “amazing and miraculous,” her willingness to contribute at the highest level in every medical environment in which she plays a part.
IN RECOGNITION OF EXCELLENCE: TOP PERFORMERS MEDICAL ASSISTANT PROGRAM BROOKLYN CAMPUS GRADUATED APRIL DeStefano, Sarnantha Doldron, Krystal Harry, Michelle Lewis, Tamifer Miller, Kathleen Rohrbaugh, Kristofor Rosario-De Los Santos, Justina Sainthilaire, Nelsy Thomas, Carol GRADUATED MAY Beckford, Kereen Benjamin, Tiffany Cutkelvin, Khrystyne Fenelon, Natacha Hosein-Baldwin, Keshia Lugo, Adam Tarulli, Danielle Thornton, Marcelle Turicik, Valerie MEDICAL ASSISTANT PROGRAM QUEENS CAMPUS GRADUATED APRIL Begum, Asma Duzan, Shira Garner, Michaelâ€™le D. Graffeo, Rita Hall-Wilson, Margo Knight, Latasha Raghunauth-Zaman, Natasha Torres, Edwin GRADUATED MAY Cipriana, Omawattee Jaundoo, Chandrawattee Summers, Gladys Amelia Jean-Baptiste, Farah Jaramillo, Vanessa Oviedo, Carolina Wilson, Lovern Pineda-Carchi, Monica Forrester, Patrena Carew, Andrew Lim, Joselyn Shields, Denise Campbell, Doreen Golston, Mercedes ONLINE MEDICAL INSURANCE BILLING AND CODING PROGRAM GRADUATED APRIL Carnahan, Sandra Dunn, Julie Goodwin, Cecile Lucht, Luz Mikolajczyk, Julie Wagner, Tammy
Dear Editor, I recently got a job through the Speed Staffing System™. As a regular reader of the newsletter, I have gotten a lot of tips and advice. One thing I don’t remember reading, though, is any advice on how to make myself indispensable in my new job. Seeking Job Security Dear SJS: As I was pondering your question, a popular police detective show was playing on TV in the background and it got me to thinking that the best advice I can give you – and anyone else who wants to be indispensable to their employer – is to be a “detective” on your job. Tap into your inner detective skills and put them to work. What are some of the top detective skills and how can you use them to become invaluable to your employer? Listed below are a few ideas: ♠ Problem-solving skills. This is the number one function of a detective. If you solve problems for your new employer, all will go well. On the other hand, make sure you are not a source of problems to the organization. In other words, don’t create problems, solve them. ♠ Observation and listening skills. Detectives must keep their eyes and ears open for clues. In your case, you are keeping your eyes and ears open for clues to problem-solving opportunities. If you do that, you should be able to figure out exactly how you can fill a niche for your employer. ♠ Critical thinking skills. Detectives don’t take information at face value, nor are they locked into narrow thinking. Equally, you should be open to garnering full information and use expansive, out-of-the-box thinking. Just because things are done in a particular way, does not mean they cannot be improved. If you discover an opportunity to solve a problem or improve a process or situation, focus on it and pursue it in a detailed manner. ♠ Research skills. Detectives always research their hunches and ideas to make sure they do not make any mistakes. You should definitely do the same, so that you can justify your thoughts and actions to your employer in a manner in which you can back up with facts. ♠ Communication skills. A detective’s success will often depend on being able to communicate and come across well, so that they can be trusted by others and establish and maintain working relationships. That is done by evaluating the audience, choosing the right vocabulary, using the proper voice inflection, and demonstrating empathy. Once others see you as “human,” real and reasonable, they will be more open to assisting you. So, SJS, there it is. Dust off your Sherlock Holmes’ hat and get to work! The Editor
Since 1776, millions of immigrants from countries around the world have arrived at America’s shores. Their contributions are felt in every area of enterprise, including industry, science, agriculture and the service trades. Many of them went on to win world renown and their names will live on in the history books and minds of others. There are countless stories of the hard work and struggle of those great individuals whose lives became part of the rich tapestry that is America. Added to the unending stories stored in the memory banks of individual families throughout the United States, stories about family members from far flung nations whose fervor to live the American dream, forged with a powerful work ethic, courage and an abiding faith, is the story of Ranen Kundu. Ranen Kundu, instructor of Computers, Office Procedures and Business English at Allen School since 2003, has a story of his own, a story of hard work and the positive rewards of it. Presently, Mr. Kundu teaches at both the Brooklyn and Queens campuses. In a life filled with ups and downs, Mr. Kundu, achieved his long sought goal. On April 15, 2009, he became an American citizen. An electrical engineer from Dhaka, Bengladesh, who had been working for that country’s government navigation project, Kundu came to America, in 1994, “to pursue the American Dream.” Toward that end, he obtained a masters degree in Computer Science from the City College of New York with a clear cut goal to work in Information Technology in the Engineering area. Unfortunately, in what would be a life-altering set of circumstances, 9/11 ensued and the jobs in Mr. Kundu’s field of choice became extremely rare and most difficult to obtain. It was at that time, that a close friend introduced Mr. Kundu to the Allen School, where he was hired as a computer instructor. With what he refers to as, “The teaching and help” of his friend and the “wonderful staff” at Allen School, Mr. Kundu, a highly motivated person, eager to learn from everyone, found a place in which his great knowledge, kind heart and dedication to excellence would be valued and optimized. “I like teaching and I learn so much from my students,” Kundu said. “My knowledge could not be complete without their help and the help of my colleagues and friends at Allen School.” On April 15th, when Mr. Kundu became a United States citizen, he reflected back on his personal history and on his parents who had raised four sons, of which Mr. Kundu is the third. His oldest brother is a medical doctor, working in Public Health for the Government of Bangladesh. His second brother is a businessman, and his youngest brother, living in Canada, is a Professional Civil Engineer. Mr. Kundu lives in Queens with his wife and two sons. His youngest son, Ryan, born here, is ten years old, in third grade, and wants to become a detective. His older son, Rahul, twenty years old, is presently at NYU studying in a dual program, simultaneously completing a Bachelors degree in Electrical Engineering and a Masters in Mathematics. In his “free time, Rahul, is doing a summer internship at the United States Air Force Research Lab in Rome, New York. Ranen Kundu is indeed living his American Dream, providing opportunities for his family, and for the countless Allen School students who are fortunate to be in his classroom. “I am proud of myself as a United States citizen,” Mr. Kundu said, “Now, I can vote and submit my opinion to the Government. This country has given me so much since I got here. Now it is my turn to give back.” Mr. Kundu is the de facto Allen School chronicler of events, generously offering his photographic expertise by taking photos for so many years. To see his current exhibit of the Graduation 2009 ceremonies, go to: For Facebook: Queens and Brooklyn Campuses Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=89847&id=56312267794 Online Campus Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=92459&id=57096317965 For the Blog: http://blog.online.allenschool.edu/?p=181#more-181