Mayland Community College’s 2015 North Carolina Community College System’s Academic Excellence Award recipient is Matthew Ray. He will graduate with his Associate Degree in Nursing this May, and intends to continue his education at a four-year institution after graduating.
Mayland was not the first choice for Ray as he started his educational journey out of high school. After spending a year enrolled in a four-year university, he decided to take time off to explore career options. During that time out of school, Ray began working at a local hospital.
This job in the health care field reminded him of an earlier interest in helping others.
“When I thought about the career I wanted, it involved helping people,” said Ray. “I didn’t want my job to be sitting behind a desk all day. I got a lot of gratification from seeing people heal while I was working at the hospital.”
After talking with his dad about the possibility of becoming a nurse, his dad suggested that he consider Mayland’s Nursing Program.
Ray came to Mayland to renew his Certified Nursing Assistant license and talked with instructors of the program.
“Now when I think about two years ago when I started this program of all the things that I have learned, I feel prepared to enter the field after graduation,” said Ray.
Ray credits Mayland instructors, the smaller class sizes, and the overall atmosphere of the college in helping students succeed. Ray is interested in working an emergency room or in an intensive care unit as he moves from the classroom into his career of helping others.
“Mayland is a good choice for students,” said Ray. “It’s been an awesome experience for me.”