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Allied Health debuts new medical assistant program

May. 5, 2022, 9:06 AM


by Kylie Avery

Ebony McHaskell speaks during a presentation about VUMC’s new medical assistant training program.
Ebony McHaskell speaks during a presentation about VUMC’s new medical assistant training program. (photo by Donn Jones)

Vanderbilt University Medical Center Programs for Allied Health launched a new medical assistant (MA) program in partnership with Nashville State Community College (NSCC). The program enrolled its first cohort of 11 VUMC employees on April 25.

MA trainees will complete a 12-week program that includes course work at NSCC and a clinical preceptorship at VUMC.

The MA trainees will retain their status as full-time VUMC employees with compensation and benefits and receive complete coverage of tuition and fees.

“We are delighted to offer this exciting program for employees who desire a career change in support of health care at VUMC. The MA trainees will gain the necessary skills to support the needs of the Medical Center while following their passion to serve patients as medical assistants,” said Peggy Valentine, EdD, Vice President for Allied Health Education.

VUMC provides a performance-based clinical ladder advancement program, where individuals can advance from level 1 through level 3 with incremental increases in salary. This program is designed to retain high-quality MAs by recognizing excellence in engagement, clinical skills and research. All full-time and part-time employees are eligible if they meet the requirements.

“There is a need for medical assistants in every aspect of care at VUMC. Through this program we hope to fill many of those positions within a year,” said Valentine.

The medical assistant program plans to enroll two cohorts of VUMC employees annually and one cohort of high school graduates during the summer. Graduates of the program will work in adult and pediatric services at VUMC and its regional hospitals and clinics.

“We are excited for this opportunity to support our employees in their health care journey and expand the education services offered by the Center for Programs in Allied Health,” said Ebony McHaskell, director of the Center for Programs in Allied Health.

To learn more about enrollment in the medical assistant program visit:

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