Chris Blanton, Sophomore Catcher from Timber Creek HS, has been awarded the prestigious Bill Tuten Baseball Scholar-Athlete from the FCSAA Baseball Committee.
Professor Ziesemer has been connecting students at LSSC with jobs since 2000.
Students take advantage of tutors and updated technology in the Learning Center.
Blue bins with pyramid-shaped tops can be found all over Lake-Sumter State College’s Leesburg campus, encouraging students to recycle their empty soda cans and bottles.
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
|LSSC alumni Teena McKay and Ana McGlohorn stand before Florida Hospital Waterman, where they both work thanks to the guidance of Brandy Ziesemer.|
Teena McKay worked in a school kitchen for 13 years to put her daughters through school. While going through a divorce, she lived in a one-bedroom apartment with her two daughters, working full-time in the kitchen as well as taking classes at Lake-Sumter so she could support herself in the future. Today she works at Waterman along with Hudson as a medical coder, assigning codes to written diagnoses for billing by insurance companies. She now has the career of her dreams, and recently, a new home as well.
These women are just two of the many students who found their new beginning in Brandy Ziesemer’s classroom. Ziesemer was asked to help start Lake-Sumter’s Health Information Management (HIM) course, and saw it accredited in 2000. Since then, she has helped thirteen graduates get a job at Waterman, eight with the Central Florida Health Alliance and eight at South Lake Hospital.
|Ziesemer has been helping HIM students at LSSC find careers since |
the course began in 2000.
Jessica Yelvington, who has been at Waterman for nearly four years, was hired because of a practicum that Ziesemer arranged. “She picks cool places close to you,” says Yelvington. “Brandy was a really good teacher. She really knew her stuff and knew what to teach you.”
According to Susan Bump, the Health Information Services (HIS) Operations Coordinator, Ziesemer also instilled in her students a good work ethic for their future careers. “She emphasized that our participation in the course was kind of like a job. Our attendance was important; if she were to refer us to a job or recommend us or act as a reference, she could say what we did in school as far as attendance and performance.”
Ziesemer was the one who helped Bump get her first job coding job with Per-Se Technologies, before she moved to Waterman. Now, Bump returns the favor by overseeing those who Ziesemer sends in for practicums. “I want to always give back to Brandy because of what she’s done for me and for everybody. She’s a good advocate for the profession and for her students and former students, and she’s a friend.”
|Susan Bump found her first job in HIM through Ziesemer. She has since become the |
Heath Information Services Operations coordinator at Waterman.
To Ziesemer, helping students succeed is like a hobby. She is constantly making connections in the health information field that allow her to find jobs for those in her classes. “I just try to keep my fingers in as many pots as possible, because it all winds up helping my students,” she says.
Ziesemer worked as a middle manager for a managed care organization in New Jersey and northern California before moving to Florida in 1993 to help with a personal business. She went from working 60 hours per week to 20 after the move, and to fill in the extra time she asked to teach a continuing education coding course at what was then Lake County Area Vocational Technical Center. When Lake-Sumter Community College asked her to teach shortly after, Ziesemer had all the experience but none of the accreditations needed to formally teach. So, within eight months she completed the entire HIM course and took the National Certification Exam so she could teach. In 2003 she earned a coding certificate just to make the program more credible.
Now she is a Registered Health Information Administrator, a Certified Coding Specialist and an American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) – approved trainer for ICD-10 coding. She has a Masters in English, as well as 18 Masters-level graduate credit hours in healthcare informatics. She has also published a textbook – Medical Office Management and Technology: An Applied Approach – and co-authored and contributed to several others.
Besides being well-qualified, Bump says that Ziesemer also keeps the information she teaches up to date. “It’s a really, really good course,” she says, and adds that she would recommend the program to anyone due to its value in the career field.
According to Hudson, one of the best features of the HIM field is the great variety of possible jobs and the opportunities to branch out. She originally wanted to become a coder, but found that she liked working with the physicians most because it ultimately helps the patients. This fact gave her work a purpose, so that for her it is more than just a job.
|Beth Hudson found a career she loves by branching out in the field of HIM.|
“I love the job I have just because of the people I work with and the professional atmosphere there,” she adds. This was a sentiment expressed by several others in her department, including Bump, Yelvington, and Ana McGlohorn, who codes ER records as well as auditing others’ work. She has been with Waterman for nine years so far, and says, “It’s been a great place to work.”
All it takes for a student to get a career in Health Information Management is a few courses at LSSC, and the HIM workers at Waterman have some advice for the journey. McKay’s counsel is to “Buckle down, take advantage of all the help Brandy has to offer, be diligent, don’t let up. Stick to it. Focus. If a student in Brandy’s classes works hard, and shows her that they’re working hard and they’re really trying, she will advocate for them every way possible.”
Hudson’s advice is to be flexible, and not to expect to learn everything at once. There is lots of information in the HIM course, and it changes often. She also reminds students that they may have to work their way up to the job that they want. Hudson initially spent two years answering phones before advancing, and has since played many roles as she moved up through the ranks.
Yelvington counsels students to pay attention to the rules of the medical information field, and Bump stresses that those in the HIM course should “definitely take [the] credentialing exams. Do it soon after you graduate. It’s something you’ll have forever. Brandy always impressed that upon us.”
|Jessica Yelvington became acquainted with Waterman through a practicum that Ziesemer arranged. Now, she works with birth certificates there.|
Health Information Management is a solid career choice for any student. Though pursuing it takes some work, caring and enthusiastic teachers like Ziesemer bring it within reach. When “you know your teacher appreciates or notices what you’re doing, it encourages you to work harder,” says McKay. “If it hadn’t been for Brandy, I wouldn’t be working where I’m at now.” One person can sometimes make all the difference in a student’s career, and for many at Waterman and other hospitals all over Florida and beyond, that one person has been Brandy Ziesemer.
Thursday, May 8, 2014
Photo By: Patrick Endicott
|Sophmore Chris Blanton showing determination at bat, just like he does in the classroom.|
Photo By: P.Endicott
Blanton is one of the most highly regarded student-athletes in the programs history. His breadth of academic excellence can be seen in the classroom and on his transcript as he has achieved a 4.0 GPA and been named to the President’s list every semester at LSSC. Blanton has been on the FCSAA and Mid-Florida Conference All-Academic teams in the past and is slated to achieve these honors again this year as well as NJCAA Academic All-American honors this year. Blanton was also selected by the LSSC Student Government Association to attend the Florida Model United Nations Program, last fall at Santa Fe College. Blanton was recognized at this program as a “leader, having a good sense of humor and strong professionalism”, by his peers. Blanton has also served on the LSSC Student Life budget committee for two years and has been a representative on the College Wide Student Government Association advocating for his fellow teammates on the Lakehawks Baseball team as well as students within the college overall.
|Photo Courtesy of LSSC Athletics|
Blanton has also found time to be involved in community service activities serving as a elementary school mentor, reading to students as a part of the “Read Across America” reading program, “buddy” for the North Lake County Miracle league, volunteer at local little league clinics and also assisted with the Habitat for Humanity projects in our local community. Blanton having now completed his Associates Degree at Lake-Sumter is moving on to attend the University of Central Florida in the fall.
Friday, April 25, 2014
Photo By: Kevin Trinidad
|Rebecca Nour looking at textbooks for future courses.|
Jack Moynihan is a student at Lake-Sumter and can be commonly seen in the Learning Center focusing on homework. This semester is crucial for Moynihan because once the fall begins, he will no longer be a LSSC student; Moynihan will be enrolled in our partner in education school, the University of Central Florida. Moynihan feels “relieved” that graduation is only days away and is optimistic for the future, “I’ll be studying Sports & Exercise Science and can’t wait to be at UCF.”
Amanda Media was in the library, rapidly typing away on her laptop and wearing earphones to cancel out any noise that could possibly distract her. Media is finishing up her second semester and it “feels good.” Though Direct Connect is high on everyone’s plan for schooling after Lake-Sumter, Media is keeping her options open and is considering other Colleges and Universities in Florida to attend. Aside from studying for finals, Media is also preparing for summer courses.
Lovens Lauvore has completed his first year of college and is grateful for what it has taught him, “You get a good understanding of what is expected from you, and what school is like in larger, more dynamic University.” And though Lauvore had a successful year, his ambitions to transfer to Santa Barbara City College will be met in the fall, for the start of a new school year.
Rebecca Nour works in the Cooper Memorial Library, which is conveniently located on the LSSC South Lake campus. In between checking out guest with their books, Nour tells me of an eight page paper she has to finish and a five minute presentation she has to prepare. Nour has always been a hard worker and that is part of the reason why she is dual-enrolled, attending East Ridge High School when she is not at Lake-Sumter. Nour says she likes attending both schools, “I am able to advance in my educational career and get college credit while still be in high school,” and now she is contemplating which classes to take next term.
When asked what they would have changed or done differently about this semester, universally the answer was “try harder.” In any situation, all you can do is try your best, and by the looks of it, these students are on to even more achievements that what they have already accomplished. Congratulations to everyone on another successful semester, and may prosperity follow for the summer and fall term.
Thursday, April 24, 2014
|players learning the ropes from Matt Byrd,|
the magic instructor for the table.
Players going all out against one another for a shot of the prizes.
Wednesday, April 23, 2014
|Blonde hair fetches some of the highest prices per inch. Selling it can be a quick fix for a big bill.|
A woman in Indiana sold 31” of her hair for $4,000. Another in Utah sold hers for the same amount, and a man in New York got $600 for 27” of his. Average prices are around $500, but exceptional hair can go for much, much higher. On buyandsellhair.com, a girl named Cheyenne from North Carolina is currently asking $5000 for 35” of light blonde locks so she can pay for college, and she’ll probably get it. A quick scan around a hair-selling website will reveal that the idea isn’t so rare or strange after all; sellers and buyers from all over the world regularly meet up to trade tresses for cash.
Almost any kind of hair over ten inches can sell, but certain types will garner higher prices. First of all, buyers like hair to be “virgin,” meaning it hasn’t been dyed, treated, blow-dried, permed, or straightened. Hair from a non-smoking environment is preferred, as are locks that haven’t been washed every day or cleaned with harsh shampoos. A healthy diet and exercise are both desirable as well, since these factors can affect hair quality. Prices also increase dramatically with length.
These are all factors that sellers can control; others are up to the genetic luck of the draw. Naturally blonde hair will fetch more than brown of the same length, and hair of European descent is worth more than the same amount of Indian or Asian hair, since selling hair is a more common practice in those places. A ponytail with a circumference of four inches or greater is more valuable, and when it comes to texture, completely straight is the rarest and thus the most expensive. All types of hair can sell for a good price, but someone with two feet or more of virgin, thick, straight, light blonde will be looking at a payout in the thousands.
Several websites specialize in this business. Hairwork.com was one of, if not the first to connect individual sellers with buyers. More sophisticated sites such as buyandsellhair.com have since been created. These sites charge various fees to host hair ads, but it is a small investment compared to the reward. Ebay and Craigslist offer free ads if the seller doesn’t mind that prices there are usually lower and fewer responses come in than from a dedicated website. Hair-selling websites also bring the benefit of providing information about common scams to avoid and tips for writing a successful advertisement.
Sellers are advised to keep an open mind. While many buyers will purchase a ponytail to use for wigs, extensions, doll hair, or art, others may have more radical requests. Some will pay to have the seller model a certain haircut. Others will ask to cut the hair themselves, or to give the seller a makeover. Sellers will have to decide what they are comfortable with, and at what price.
|The longer the better in this business. The author's hair had multiple offers for $1,700.|
For $1,700 plus the cost of travel and lodging and three complimentary wigs, the hairdressers at magic-makeover will have the freedom to give me any number and style of cuts that they please, ending with a bald head. That kind of money will pay for quite a bit of college, and it’s not like selling a kidney on the black market: selling hair is generally safe, and it will grow back.
There are a few scams out there that potential sellers need to be aware of. Generally, only PayPal should be used for transactions, and hair should only be cut and sent after full payment is confirmed as received. One scam involves buyers sending a fake check or money orders for more than they offered and then requesting the extra portion back. Another involves getting sellers to send their hair while a PayPal transaction is pending, before the payment is rejected as a fake credit card.
Most serious sellers will ask for additional pictures of the hair they want to buy, but some will ask for an inordinate amount simply so they can have the photos. Sellers should also be wary of snipping off hair samples, as it can invalidate legitimate offers and reduce the hair’s worth.
Selling one’s hair for money may seem radical at first, but it can be a good way to pay for classes, bills, or a fun vacation. Besides, summer is coming. A cooler hairstyle and a few hundred bucks could go hand in hand.
|group studying is a great way to help figure out what it is|
that you as a student need help with.
Tuesday, April 22, 2014
|Students and faculty lined up for a luau feast provided by the SGA.|
The Angler and SGA teamed up to offer the biggest and largest event, combining an Easter egg hunt with a Hawaiian-themed luau. Other groups were represented as well. The Society for the Advancement of Management had a table set up, as well as students raising funds for the Students Helping Students scholarship.
|SGA Vice President Matt Guy gracefully demonstrates his limbo skills.|
The Aloha Summer Luau event was by far the largest of the day. SGA members served shish kabobs, rice, smoothies, and pineapple upside-down cake along with giveaways like flower hair-clips and sunglasses. Across from them, a DJ played music and directed games. First up was a hula hoop contest to get students moving, followed musical chairs, limbo, and other competitions. One of these, a musical scavenger hunt, involved participants dashing out into the crowd to collect whatever item the DJ requested. Crowd members gave up purses, driver’s licenses, and belts (which then had to be replaced by the players) as needed.
|One challenge from the musical scavenger hunt was to help owners put their stolen belts back on.|
|Grayson Allen and Marissa Bjorkland (back) study during the YODAA Scream Day event.|
Photos: Mark Valentino
|Each honoree received a lapel pin and a medal for their exemplary|
work this semester.
Students from each club who made a difference in student life were recognized for their hard work and devotion to making the experience at LSSC a better one for current students and future as well. Heather Elmatti presented the angler staff with their medals and pins. Mrs. Lackey presented the SGA awards for the Leesburg Campus; while Mrs. Karp awarded both college diplomats and SGA awards for the South Lake Campus. “I can't believe that I am crying," remarked Sherikey Mobley after receiving her medallion and pin for an outstanding job as one of the main college diplomats at South Lake.
The ceremony was finalized with the awards of the student life awards who were presented to Jeremy Van Cise and Wesley Blake at the end of the ceremony. Each student was presented with a special plaque and a monetary award as well. When Jeremy Van Cise was awarded the student life award for Leesburg campus the crowd erupted into a standing ovation and cheers for all the hard work that Jeremy has put into everything that he has done over the years.
|Patrick Endicott: The hardest working student in LSSC|
Monday, April 21, 2014
Photo By: Kevin Trinidad
|Lake-Sumter South Lake Campus|
The Ambassador Program is currently seeking applications for the fall of 2014; the deadline to apply is July 16. Students contemplating applying must have a 3.0 GPA, and LSSC Development Manager, Erin O’Steen-Lewin, insist that “Students are encouraged to apply only if they believe the program and service commitment will enhance their educational goals without hindering academic progress.”
A $600 pay per semester and $700 scholarship per term are financial benefits the Ambassador Program institutes, but the paramount of information that will be obtained in the field of leadership and organization is integral. O’Steen-Lewin accredits the position of Ambassador as opening many doors for students, “Being a student ambassador allows students to meet influential people in the community, including business owners and potential employers.” The Ambassador Program can also bring along opportunities to be awarded scholarships.
Some of the duties that being an Ambassador entails are leading the Lake-Sumter campus tour, ushering at Performing Art Series functions, representing Lake-Sumter in outreach capabilities, assisting with receptions, attending student leadership workshops; but most importantly, representing Lake-Sumter in the best manner and being a role model for current and future students.
For more information, call Erin O’Steen-Lewin at 352-365-3506 or e-mail email@example.com. As students, the act of procrastination happens naturally; the application can be found at http://lssc.edu/students/Documents/StudentForms/AmbassadorApplication.pdf, and getting it turned in as early as possible is beneficial.
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Student could use some extra cash when going to college. Why spend your paycheck on books and tuition or paying back student loans; when you can receive scholarships to pay for all or most of it. Here are five ways to find/ apply for scholarships:
First way to locate scholarships is to go to the LSSC website. Hover your mouse over the student tab at the top of the page and click on scholarships under future students. When you get to the scholarship page it has a link for financial aid and for the foundation website. The foundation website link takes you the scholarship webpage and at the top it tells you the deadlines to have the application in by. You need to apply online and contact Claudia Morris at MorrisC@lssc.edu or you can call her at her office number 352-365-3539.
The financial aid office is also a huge resource for different type of scholarships. You can go to the financial aid office located in the front of the student services building. When you walk in the financial aid office there is a wall in the back of the office and each cubby is labeled with names of different scholarships. They have scholarships based on cultural background, financial status, first generation college student, and many more. If you need help with choosing which scholarship best suits you, you can ask a 22financial aid specialist .
Academic Advisors are also great resources for scholarships. “Based on what career you are thinking about going into they can point you in the direction of scholarships that fit your needs”, says McKinzy Mask. Make an appointment with an advisor and then ask how they can point you in the direction of possible scholarships.
Last way you can find scholarships are googling scholarships. The first one that pops up is FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). Most colleges want you to file for this grant. It is commonly called the Pell Grant because you do not have to pay any of the monies back. This is like a scholarship which you also do not have to pay back unless there are circumstances listed in the contract. FAFSA award money gets paid to you through your Lois account. Lake Sumter takes out tuition cost and books if you choose to get your books form the Bookstore. The rest of the money gets put on a Florida Pre-paid credit card for you to use for whatever you need to use it for. For example it will pay your bills, get you a new computer, and dinner. To apply for this scholarship go to fafsa.ed.gov.