Kelly Rose is a perfect example of what dedication and perseverance look like. She has worked extremely hard to get to where she is now. She started as a Medical Assistant student at Ross in Brighton and over the course of 13 years, she has worked her way up the ladder to become Senior Administrative Manager at Michigan Medicine Cancer Center in Ann Arbor, MI, where she recruits, interviews, and selects staff.
Aside from her managerial role, Rose was selected by the Brighton Health Center to serve as an Advisory Board member at Ross in Brighton, MI. As an Advisory Board member, Rose has provided valuable feedback to help improve the school’s Medical Assistant program. 2018 was her tenth year as a member of the Advisory Board and she has encouraged many other Michigan Medicine employees to become Advisory Board members, as well.
Community involvement is also very important to Rose. She served as the keynote speaker for the April 2018 graduation ceremony, where she shared her success over the past ten years, working her way up from a Medical Assistant to Manager over two teams at the Cancer Center.
We took some time to talk to Rose and ask her a few questions about her career journey and her personal life.
Tell me about your yourself.
I was a stay-at-home mom for a long time and then one day I decided to go back to school to become a Medical Assistant. I attended Ross Medical in Brighton. Eventually, I moved up the ladder to become an Associate Manager, and then an Intermediate, and now I am a Senior Manager at the University of Michigan. I am remarried, I have two stepchildren, and three of my own. It has taken me 13 years to get to where I’m at now – from the time I was a Medical Assistant at Ross through to where I’m at currently as a Senior Manager.
What was it about being a Medical Assistant that appealed to you?
My youngest has a rare illness and I thought it would be a good idea to be in the medical field so I could become more educated on her illness and help in more ways than I could before. I decided that becoming a Medical Assistant would be something a little bit easier to get myself in and establish myself. I was almost 40 years old at the time.
You’re a manager now — how did that start for you?
Yes, I’m the Senior Administrative Manager at the cancer center and I am managing two teams right now. I started here at the cancer center as a Medical Assistant back in the day and then I left. I did my externship there and then I was a Medical Assistant for a year at the cancer center. I then left, went to Brighton, where I worked for eight months, and then I became the lead Medical Assistant for four years. Soon after, I became the Associate Manager in 2013. In 2016, I felt like I needed something new, so I went back to the cancer center and they hired me as an Associate Manager. In the last couple of years, I have taken on a lot and they moved me from an intermediate to a senior position. I got to where I’m at now by being in the field and dedicating myself. I worked as hard as I could and I stayed overtime when needed. I also came in early everyday. Putting in the time and devoting yourself is key. In addition, you have to be willing to take chances, make mistakes, and learn from them. It also helps to set goals and be consistent with working towards achieving them.
What advice would you like to share with other students who are in or will be in the Medical Assistant program in the future?
Just keep an open mind of where you would like to work and study very hard. It’s also good to start being professional at school before going out into the workfield. In addition, devote your time because hard work pays off.
What is your favorite thing about your job?
Besides working with so many different people and learning new things, the feeling I get when I leave here is incredible. I feel so lucky to be working and not like the patients I see everyday. It’s a very gratifying and rewarding place to work. In addition, being okay with making mistakes and learning from them is something that helps me a lot. Being able to leave here and go home knowing I did something good for either a staff member, co-worker, patient, or a patient’s family member feels very good.
What achievements are you most proud of?
I am most proud of getting to the position I’m at now. I worked very hard to go from a Medical Assistant to a Senior Manager. The next position would be an Associate Director. I’m also proud of staying home for the first time in 15 years and being with my kids. I set them on a good path and I’ve worked hard afterwards to get myself on a good path as well.
What are your most immediate future goals and aspirations?
My immediate goal at this time is getting our cancer center to another level. We’re working very hard and that is my goal right now. Not to move up professionally, but to establish a more robust center. We’re going through a lot of change right now and getting through this change is very difficult as a manager because change is difficult for staff. Getting us to a better place here at the cancer center is something that is going to take a few years to do and I look forward to it.
Are there any particular persons or events that have inspired you to progress as a person?
It’s my kids that have gotten me to progress to where I’m at now. Each one of them had their own life struggles and I learned a lot from them. In addition to that, my dad was a police officer and I had the opportunity to learn about hard work and giving back to the community from him. It’s a very rewarding and gratifying feeling.
What do you for for leisure and recreation? What are your hobbies?
I love hanging out with my family. I bake cheesecakes on the side and sell them. My husband is a food scientist so we love cooking together. We also love brewing beer at home and I love learning and helping him with the process. It’s a lot of fun to be able to do that with family. I also love to travel up north and hang out with family.
What motivated you to make the sacrifices that you made in order to get to where you’re at now?
My kids. I was divorced and a Medical Assistant at the time. I decided to push myself to learn everything I can. I wanted to do more and better for my kids. I wanted them to see that hard work pays off and to prove to myself that I can move along and show others that being a Medical Assistant is a great entry level job. I wanted to be the best that I could be at it, and I did, and then I wanted to move up the ladder.
What are some techniques you used to keep yourself motivated in school?
I had no techniques. Back in that time, it was sink or swim. It was just dedication and determination that this is what I want and I’m going to be the best at it. I had three kids at home, one sick daughter, and a home nurse coming in and taking care of her. This motivated me to be the best and not let myself fail. Positive thinking and reading also helped a ton too.
How might you advise someone who was also thinking about returning to school or embarking on a new course in life?
Just do it. Don’t think and question it. If you do, you’ll never move forward. You just need to take that leap of faith and go for it. If it turns out that it’s not the right thing then something else will come along, but by sitting and not doing something, you’ll never get to that next step unless you jump out there.