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Katelyn Cole believes her success is from the team that supported her.
“My life was radically changed by my leader and IU Health, “shared Cole.
Cole had dreams of becoming a nurse, specifically in cardiology. She was even accepted to the St. Elizabeth School of Nursing. To achieve her nursing dream, she would need to acquire a skill so she could work while attending nursing school. Cole took some phlebotomy courses at Ivy Tech and applied to work at IU Health Arnett. She hoped her new job would help her become a nurse.
“I never dreamed that door would be a rabbit hole of opportunity.”
In 2013, Cole began her career at IU Health drawing blood at IU Health Arnett on Greenbush Street. This job not only helped pay the bills, but it helped with her clinical rotation. “I remember thinking about how big a deal it was that I got in at IU Health and not somewhere else. Little did I know that was a cataclysmic event in my life.”
Cole’s leader saw something in the way she approached her job which made her wonder if another career path might be worth considering. Her leader asked if she had ever thought about working in a lab full time.
“I can’t tell you how glad I am that she took that risk. In that one single moment, she invested in me as a person, not just a student or an employee.”
Once Cole completed her clinical rotations, she started pursing her education as a Medical Lab Technician (MLT). Cole says she learned a lot in those three years. “It taught me loyalty, the value of a leader who walks beside you, not in front of you. I learned how to take responsibility for my actions when I am wrong and how-to problem solve on the fly.”
Cole was able to complete her clinical rotations as an MLT at IU Health Arnett. Her team welcomed her like a member of the family. She continued to work full time, complete clinical rotations and graduate as valedictorian. She says her success was made possible because the team supported her and worked with her schedule. She passed her boards then took an opportunity in Durham, NC at Duke University in the Molecular Pathology Department. She also began her Bachelor of Science in medical technology through the University of Cincinnati’s distance learning.
Two years ago, Cole moved back home to Lafayette and looked for employment at IU Health. The job Cole took was different than the previous position in the lab yet a wonderful learning experience. Cole continued her education while learning a new electronic medical record system. COVID put a hold on her clinical rotations but not on the support from her leader and team. Cole finished her rotations and recently sat for her American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) exam.
“I have never been more thankful for a group of people, many of whom do not even know me, yet they were willing to take a chance on me. NONE of this would be remotely possible without the many different people coming to my side to help me through. I would have never accomplished what I have. They truly became my second family.”
“It has been so encouraging for me to know that I work for a company where people are willing to help better you not only as a professional, but an individual as well. These were formative years for me.”
Cole is now working in the Microbiology Lab at IU Health Pathology Lab in Indianapolis. She says it is exactly where she was meant to be and loves every minute of it.
“Thank you for teaching me professionalism, integrity and decency. Thank you for setting me up for success. Thank you for allowing me to be one of the few people on the planet who gets to wake up and love what I do.”