Johanna Mackey, '19

Coming back to where she started by becoming an instructor in the program she graduated in matter what age, you can always finish school and get your degree.

Johanna Mackey’s experience at Terra State has come full circle. From being a student to now an adjunct instructor in the program she graduated in, Mackey is excited to inspire and help students as she was only a few short years ago.

Mackey graduated from Terra State in 2019 with an Associated of Applied Science in medical assisting, an Associate of Arts in pre-psychology, and a certificate in phlebotomy.

She proved herself to be a hard worker, balancing learning, working, and providing for her family at the same time.

“I had the nice flexibility of doing it all and getting it done,” said Mackey, “My family was basically the part of me that kept me going. I kept looking at my boys and wanting to finish school to prove to them that no matter what age, you can always finish school and get your degree.”

Before becoming an adjunct instructor, Mackey worked at Magruder Hospital and ProMedica. She currently works part time at Retina Vitreous Associates as an optometric technician and photographer. Mackey is also a certified Zumba instructor, leading classes in her free time.

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    Length of Study

    2 years, Full-time

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    Less than $20,000

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    Terra State Community College

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    Job Title

    Adjunct Faculty

Johanna Mackey assisting a student with COVID-19 testing

Mackey was born in Columbia and moved to New Jersey, before coming to Ohio and settling in Port Clinton. She always was interested in the medical field but solidified her career after her husband gave her the courage to pursue it. Her mom was also a home health aide. Mackey was able to see firsthand into the medical field.

Terra State was an affordable and close to home, which made it the perfect choice for Mackey. As a student, she was involved in the Medical Assisting Student Organization (MASO) as treasurer, Phi Theta Kappa, and volunteered for Relay for Life.

She still finds opportunities to check up on her classmates and celebrate their new career achievements. Alongside her classmates were her instructors, Terrie Hopkins and Sarah Poore, who are now her colleagues.

Mackey advises students to never give up, no matter what life’s challenges bring. Learning can be stressful and difficult, but anyone can push through.

“Have motivation and find support to keep yourself going. No one else is going to do it for you,” said Mackey.

As an adjunct instructor for medical assisting, Mackey hopes to push students to finish, no matter what gets in the way. She is excited to work with different age ranges of students, showing students that age doesn’t matter, anyone can find success.

“I want to make sure I try to help them out to get to their goal and definitely not put a limit on the fact that no matter what age, we can always do it. I hope to make a small little impact on them and giving that motivation to say, ‘Everyone can do it, let's just work together,” said Mackey.