Jill Souza’s determination to better her life has led her to a career helping others.
Thanks to higher education attained at Everest University-Orange Park, she works as a medical assistant in an advanced cardiology doctor’s’ office in Port Orange, Fla.
In her job, she assists in “almost everything” such as patient intake, testing and EKGs. “I feel like I’ve accomplished more in the past year that I ever have in my life,” she says.
Souza lived in a battered women’s shelter for three months of her classes but stuck with school with the help of the shelter, friends and relatives who gave her gasoline money. Eventually, the state gave her a relocation grant and she was able to get an apartment in Daytona Beach Shores.
“At Everest, I had the greatest teacher I’ve ever had and would not have made it if not for her,” Souza says. “She even gave me hope and encouragement.”
The first time she enrolled at Everest she had to leave to care for an ill grandfather in another state. This time she not only completed the program, but made the Dean’s List and President’s List.
“I was willing to work hard to improve life for myself and my children,” says Souza, who has two daughters and a son, all teens.
“I wanted to prove to them that no matter how hard life gets you can overcome it and to never let anyone get you down,” she said. “I wanted to show that life is important and worth fighting for and overcoming anything negative.
“Things are looking all sunny now and I enjoy helping people.”