Karen Faulk, '11

Inspired by her teachers to persevere and now inspires others

The HIT program was explained to me as a way to get into the health industry if you do not like needles and other nursing responsibilities." ~ Karen Faulk

Karen Faulk had been a trial clerk at the Pasco County Court House in Florida for about twelve years. For personal reasons, Karen decided to move to Ohio with her son who was four years old at the time. Upon arriving in Ohio, she decided a career change was in order. “I sat through a lot of murder and child abuse cases. I did not want to do that anymore,” she says. “I had a lot of paralegal courses under my belt, but decided not to pursue that field.”

Karen had settled down in Woodville and began looking into a new career in the medical field. “Anatomy and physiology have always fascinated me,” she says. “However, I am not a needle person, though.” With some research, Karen discovered the Health Information Technology (HIT) program at Terra State Community College. “The HIT program was explained to me as a way to get into the health industry if you do not like needles and other nursing responsibilities. I also looked at it as job security. Hospitals and healthcare are not going anywhere.”

It took Karen longer than normal to graduate with her Associate in HIT. “It took me four years,” she says. “I was only going part-time. I worked two waitressing jobs at the same time, had a breast cancer diagnosis and had a death in the family. It was a tough time, but my instructors were amazing.” Karen did persevere and graduated in 2011 with her Terra State degree. She was also recognized with the Perseverance Award at the annual Student Recognition Banquet.

  • Program icon
  • Calendar icon
    Average Length of Study

    2 years, Full time

  • Cost icon
    Average Cost




  • Employer icon

    Wood County Hospital

  • Job Title icon
    Job Title

    Ambulatory Health Informatics Analyst

  • Salary icon
    Salary Potential

    Up to $97,189*


“Amy Anway was the head of the department at the time,” Karen says. “She kind of talked me into continuing my education.” Karen did just that while working full time at Wood Health Company. She went on to the University of Cincinnati and studied online. In 2014, she earned her Bachelor of Applied Science in Health Information Management. She also received her Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) in 2015.

Karen now works at Wood County Hospital in Bowling Green. She is an Ambulatory Health Informatics Analyst and oversees about fifteen ambulatory offices to make sure they are meeting their requirements. She also assists the Chief Information Officer on HIPPA initiatives.

Karen has not completely left Terra State, either. “Right after I graduated from Terra State, Amy Anway needed some assistance. That led me to becoming an adjunct faculty.” Karen is teaching two courses a semester, Health Record Law and Medical Terminology.

“I love my two jobs and I love my time at Terra State,” Karen says. “My instructors influenced me to continue my education. They are very caring and passionate about the field.”

*Possible salary information based on averages from salary.com

Amy Anway

Amy Anway

Dean, Allied Health, Nursing, and Human Services Division

Encouraged Karen to continue her education and share her love of HIT with others.