Queri Williams has always felt like her life was saved a long time ago. That’s why she’s so passionate about helping others now as a Medical Assistant.
Queri was born premature to a biological mother who was unable to care for her. Through foster care she was introduced to the woman who became her mother.
“My mom has always been a role model,” Queri shared. “She didn’t have to take me. She is an older mother. With her doing everything she can, she went against all odds. It was pretty much a dream come true. If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t be here at all to do anything I was able to do.”
Queri recalls watching her mother go to school to become a chiropractor. Growing up watching her mom work in the medical field is what inspired Queri to enroll in the Medical Assistant Program at UEI College in Ontario.
“My mother is the one who saved me in the beginning of my life,” Queri said. “I feel as if it’s my calling to help someone else to be given the life that I was given.”
Raising seven children, six boys and one girl, was not easy but it was a task that Queri’s mom excelled at.
“She is a woman who never gives up,” Queri said about her mother. “Nothing is ever too much. Everything that she put into the universe is what you get back… I was with her at one point when she was still studying her craft and she makes it look very easy where she is able to juggle all of these tasks and still make sure all of us can have what we need to put our best foot forward.”
As she grew, Queri struggled with her education. When she began to fall behind, her mother refused to let her quit.
“My mother did the tutoring,” she said. “She took the excess time to get off work to teach me to tell time and count on my own. It was a struggle. My mother always told me no, you’re going to do something. You can do it, I know so, you’re mine. You’re OK, this is just an uphill battle that you’re going to be able to tell as your story one day and maybe someone else has the same battle.”
When the pandemic took over that sentiment really sunk in. Queri said she was feeling trapped. She had always wanted to be in the medical field, like her mother, but she didn’t know where to start. When the world began to shut down, she took it as a sign that it was time to continue her education.
‘DON’T EVER SECOND GUESS YOURSELF‘
Balancing school and work is never easy but Queri said the staff made it all possible.
“In the beginning I was very hesitant because I wasn’t sure I actually wanted to do it, but they made it very easy for me to take a leap of faith,” she said. “Take a step out. Take the time to focus on yourself and you never know what you can accomplish. They made it easy for me to take it day by day and focus on my studies.”
“Queri was a really good student,” said Ashley Mendoza, Queri’s instructor. “She brought a huge light to our lab. She has a very bright personality. I feel like I was very fortunate to have Queri in my lab. She was always very much in a good mood, full of a lot of love and laughter. She definitely brightened my time.”
Queri admits in the past she has shut down when things get hard. With this program, she didn’t let anything stop her.
“What kept me motivated was that I have to complete this task that I have for myself,” she said. “I’m very hard on myself when it comes to my studies, my craft and my duty to complete something. What kept me motivated was I had a goal and I needed to exceed that goal and I did.”
When it came time for externship, Queri ended up working in a chiropractic office but after graduation she found a position at an urgent care clinic. She has plans to go back to school one day to further her career in the medical field. Someday she pictures herself working for a nonprofit organization that benefits families in the community.
“My advice for anyone considering any type of change in life is don’t ever second guess yourself,” she said. “Follow your heart. Follow your soul… Success is not just about money it’s about the way you make people feel, especially in the medical field. You’re saving lives. That’s something I’ve always looked at and cherished because I came from that environment where someone needed to save my life, and someone did, and someone was very selfless to do unto me what they would want done to themselves. Put your best foot forward and whatever you want to do, push forward with it.”