Hard work and determination is helping this Salter School student to achieve her dream
Daysha Morales Espada has a lot to be proud of. This Salter School Medical Assisting student has overcome many obstacles to make her way through this professional training program. She started back in May 2017, and just recently finished her coursework. On February 26, she will head out on an externship at Boston Medical Center, where she hopes eventually to work full-time.
Daysha is 24 years old, and during a recent photo shoot at the school she held up a sign that read, “For those who doubted me, look at me now…This is just the beginning.” She explains that she has had to overcome the doubts and negativity from many different people in her life, including people who bullied her in high school as well as some unsupportive family members. But here she is now, holding her head high, feeling proud of all she has accomplished.
Having come a long way
After growing up in Puerto Rico, Daysha came to the U.S. seven years ago. She came on her own, she says to “find a better future.” Many in her family were already here, and Daysha came and rented an apartment while she looked for a job. She was able to find work at a fast food restaurant, and one day found the website for the Salter School. Soon after she enrolled. Her older brother has recently come to join her, in the wake of Hurricane Maria, which devastated the island.
She continued working while she has attended the Medical Assisting program. Daysha says she chose Medical Assisting because she “like the challenges and wants to interact with many different people in the medical field.” Her experience at the Salter School has been a good one.
“In the beginning the classwork was hard,” she says, “but then I became more comfortable, because the students work together and help each other.” She describes how they practiced doing blood draws on one another, and how over time she became less nervous about this part of the training. “The students here are good,” she says. “I have a group of five friends, and I will miss being in class with them every day.” She hopes to continue to see her classmates even after they have all gone off to their various work sites for externship. “I feel excited but not nervous about my externship,” she says. “I’m happy that I made it.”
Daysha has a daughter who is 18 months old, and says although she is very busy she is doing all of this for her. She wants her family members who did not believe in her, and those others who have made her life difficult in the past, to know that she worked hard to get where she is. “I want to tell them, I have had many opportunities at the Salter School,” she says, “and I have proven I can be a good professional person.”
The instructor’s perspective
Evens Charles is one of the Medical Assisting instructors who has had the privilege of teaching Daysha. He has taught at Salter School for 16 years. “Since I met Daysha at orientation, and throughout all of her terms here, she has shown what we like to think of as the Salter School spirit.”
“She was always smiling and always happy to be here,” he says. He notes that, even though she lived far away, in Providence, RI, and had to travel all the way to Malden MA for classes, she had perfect attendance, and was always on time—for the whole seven months of the program. “That right there proves her commitment,” he says. He adds that despite her long commute—nearly 60 miles—Daysha always came to school looking very presentable, with clean scrubs and her lab coat on.
“None of us knew that she was doing such a long commute,” he says. “You would never realize that she was tired or needed to go home to her daughter or help her husband with his business.” Daysha recently moved closer to school, to Dorchester, MA, in part so her externship site would be more convenient.
“Daysha is very smart and got good grades,” he says. “She really stands out to me in the time I have been teaching here. She’s amazing, and I’m very proud of her.”
The story behind the sign
“At the end of every term, I like to do something different,” Charles says, which is why he invited the students to come and take pictures on this one particular day. “But first I told them to go to the computer classroom and create a sign that expressed their feelings about completing the program.” This is when Daysha came back with her sign about exceeding others’ expectations.
“I know she created that sign because she had personal difficulties to overcome, and had to struggle a lot to get where she is,” says Charles. “You would never know that because she carries herself very well.” He adds that, with some students who are having a hard time, the whole school would know about it. “But with Daysha, she keeps it to herself. She wanted to do this program, wanted to be professional and mature.”
Looking towards the future
Charles has talked with Daysha about her future, and she has expressed interest in coming back to the Salter School to do an additional program in Medical Billing and Coding. “This shows how committed she is to the school and what a positive experience she has had,” he says.
When you ask Daysha what advice she would give to other prospective students, she says, “Don’t let the people bullying you matter. If they don’t believe you, they will feel bad once you go ahead and do your career.” She is proud that she made it, and is excited about the future she has made for herself.
We wish Daysha all the best and look forward to profiling other stellar Salter School students like her in future blog posts. Stay tuned!
This article is part of the weekly blog of the Salter School. We care about supporting all our students as they strive to meet their career goals. Learn more about the professional training programs we offer at our Malden campus in Massachusetts, including Massage Therapy. Reach out to us today at (781)-324-5454 for more information or to schedule a campus tour. We hope to hear from you!