Student Spotlight: Keri Dorushka
Major: Surgical Technology
Hometown: Carol Stream
Keri Dorushka first attended College of DuPage right out of high school.
"I took some of my general education classes before transferring to Elmhurst College to study Music Business," she said. "My goal was to work at a record label. Looking back, I should have majored in business with a minor in music, but I was young and had dreams."
Dorushka spent 15 years working at Dominick's until she got a job at a friend's company in Ocean Imports. When the economy turned, Dorushka was laid off, and she wanted to return to school rather than work retail for the rest of her life.
Since both of her parents are in the medical field, she decided a health career would be best.
"I made an appointment with a COD counselor who helped me with my resume, and then I made an appointment with an advisor. She went over all the options that COD has to offer in the medical field, and she explained a little of what surgical techs do, as I have never heard of it before. I thought it would be the perfect choice and I really liked the fact it was a one-year program. She went over what classes I needed to take and how to go about applying."
Dorushka is now a certified surgical technician at a hospital, where she sets up the room before surgery, passes instruments to the surgeon during surgery and cleans up the room afterward. She also makes sure that sterile technique is maintained before and during surgery.
"Surgical tech is not a well-known profession and not many people even know we exist. But we play an important role, especially in being the surgeon's extra eyes, ears and hands," she said. "My main role as a health care professional is to remember that I am part of a team that must work together to achieve one goal: to give the patient the highest level of care.
"Being a tech is not for everyone. There are things you see and smell that you can't just walk away from when you are scrubbed in on a case. The Surgical Technology program at COD is very good at giving you the training, since we did class work along with lab work to prepare you for that first day in the operating room."