My name is Elena Miller. I moved to the United States from Russia 21 years ago. I'm a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer (Ultrasound Technologist), college professor and the program director of the ultrasound program at our local community college in Illinois. I love both of my jobs because I get to take care of my patients and train future sonographers. I spend 4 semesters with my students and I'm the only instructor they have for 16 months. I have a small group of students, typically 10 to 12 in each cohort annually. Therefore, we become really close to each other like a family. The program is very challenging, takes lots of hard work, dedication and perseverance to successfully graduate. In addition, students must pass 3 difficult national credentialing examinations prior to graduation. It's not an easy task and therefore it's very important for me to be there for them and give them as much support and guidance as I can. They are very much like my kids to me. I encourage my students to see the "good" of our profession which inspires them to become the best they can be. Hearing words of kindness and thankfulness from the patients goes a long way and makes my students want to go an "extra mile". I'm so grateful that I have the opportunity to teach brand new students and mold them into excellent sonographers who value every individual, every life and take care of their patients as their own family members. It's very rewarding to see students transform from day 1 to day 480 into confident and competent sonographers. It brings me much joy and satisfaction to know that my students receive a high-quality education, find employment and receive compliments about their skills.
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