Hometown: Lorton, VA
Center: Blue Ridge
Dates enrolled: 7/11/2018 – 3/20/2020
Training: Clinical Medical Assistant, Patient Care Tech., Phlebotomy Tech.
Doreita Pokuwaa was born in the United States, but spent the vast majority of her childhood in the West African country of Ghana. “It was really tough growing up financially, but we made it through as a family,” she said. In her early teen years, Doreita and her family made their way back to the U.S. where she would eventually graduate from Hayfield Secondary School. As she neared the end of her high school career, she began to ponder her next steps. Doreita said that she was fortunate to have a great guidance counselor at her high school who provided her with information about a free program called Job Corps. Doreita decided to apply, and eventually made her way to Blue Ridge Job Corps.
“During this time, I was really just trying to find myself,” she stated. Doreita said that she can never considered going into healthcare, but felt that her caring nature would make her a good fit in the medical field. She was able to earn multiple certifications in Clinical Medical Assistant, Patient Care Technician, and Phlebotomy Technician. She was able to utilize those skills during her internship at Mel Leaman Free Clinic, where she gained over 120 hours of work-based learning experience. She also made a point to get involved in community service as well, volunteering at the Atkins Food Pantry, Mount Pleasant Museum, and local elementary school functions.
Doreita is now employed at the Mount Vernon Hospital in Alexandria, VA, where she works high risk patients who may be a danger to themselves or others. She says that she really enjoys her job, but she eventually hopes to continue her education to become a registered nurse.
“In order to grow, learn, and find your purpose, don’t get comfortable in one place or one state of mind,” Doreita said. “Take a leap of faith, step out of your comfort zone, and see what the world has to offer you.”