James Nevel

An Interview with James Nevel

James Nevel is a volunteer EMT/firefighter who is a December 2013 graduate of the Surgical Technology program at Herzing University – Toledo. James was hired at the prestigious University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital (the only children's hospital in Michigan ranked nationally in all 10 specialties by U.S. News & World Report) where he did his externship. He already has been asked to join the child trauma team there as well. He is pictured holding his U of M hospital ID.

Q: How does it feel to get hired?
A: Amazing. Simply amazing to finally be done and have somebody want to hire me so badly.

Q: Why did you get the job?
A: I did my clinical rotation there and they were so impressed with what I knew and how I was able to perform that they knew when I was still in clinicals that they were going to hire me. But it was nerve-wracking"multiple interviews, multiple pages of questions they asked. Some very tough questions"diversity, questions about supervisors, co-workers, knowledge-based questions…and you have to make each step correctly in order to go on to the next interview.

Q: What was the difference-maker in that preparation?
A: Herzing University. The knowledge we were taught, compared with other schools, is head-and-shoulders better.

Q: Did the P.R.I.C.E. of Success factor in there?
A: Yes. We showed up every day, going off a professional base, with responsibility for learning, showing integrity and caring"and it showed through in my clinicals.

Q: What did Herzing do that you didn't expect in all of this?
A: I actually used Herzing as a professional reference, and they called and talked to my instructors as to how I was able to perform, my grades, what kind of attitude I had, and what sort of methods I set forward in achieving a goal. They went above and beyond in recommending me for the job.

Q: Do you anticipate being in the operating room?
A: Yes, and I can't wait. If I'm able to prove myself well enough, they want to add me to their pediatric trauma team. If pediatric emergencies happen, I'm the one they call to help with the surgery.

Q: You've been to other schools. At the end of all this, that whole journey, what makes you glad, and what makes you sad?
A: The biggest thing is, I'm kind of sad I just didn't come to Herzing to begin with"the small classrooms, the one-on-one with the instructors. If you needed extra help, they were always there. You're not just sitting in a classroom with 300 people, a professor with their back to you with a mouse just clicking on a projector screen. If at any time we had problems, we worked together as a group and figured out how to solve that problem instead of just saying, ‘figure it out on your own and come back next week.'

Q: You're walking out of here with six other classmates: colleagues, friends, what?
A: Family. We've spent hours studying. I came in as the last person in the group. They welcomed me with open arms. We talk outside of school and hang out outside of school. It's truly been an extended family now. 

James NevelToledo

"The economy started to tank and I lost my job. My son had some extensive medical bills as well. You can either go sideways, down, or up. I chose to go up"and enrolled at Herzing."