From student to staff: Paul D. Camp graduate undergoes role reversal
Published 1:56 pm Friday, November 9, 2018
by Wendy Harrison
It wasn’t too long ago that Academic Advisor Jordan Hewett stood in the same shoes as the students he now helps.
So there is no wonder why the Class of 2013 graduate of Paul D. Camp has some good firsthand advice to offer from the start of his new job at Germanna Community College.
“I figured this would be a great opportunity for me to serve the community college student,” Hewett said. “The job will allow me to help students as my advisor did for me by guiding them through the enrollment process, and informing them about how to navigate college as a whole.”
Hewett began contemplating college early. He took dual enrollment classes while at Southampton High School before enrolling full time at Paul D. Camp. His time at PDCCC proved eventful, as he was selected to receive the distinguished Bobby B. Worrell Scholarship, as well as the Camp to Camp Scholarship.
“I was extremely grateful to receive both of these scholarships,” he said. Hewett was also selected to represent the college as a Presidential Student Ambassador and was president of the Science Club. In addition, he worked a part-time job at the Village at Woods Edge and served as an assistant scoutmaster with Troop 125.
After Hewett earned an associate degree in General Studies and a certificate in General Education, he continued his education at Christopher Newport University in Newport News. With a longtime interest in the medical field, he started out in pre-health studies, pursuing a bachelor’s in cellular and molecular biology.
“Despite studying and visiting my professor almost weekly, I failed my first chemistry course,” he recalled. “It was a tough reality, but I visited my options and changed my degree, thinking that I had no hope for a future in medicine.”
However, that wasn’t the case, as Hewett discovered that he can still apply the bachelor’s degree in communication studies that he earned in 2016 from CNU to the field of medicine.
“I haven’t abandoned my dreams,” he said. “I just spent the spring 2018 term going to class every Wednesday night and all day every Saturday, using my passion to ace the EMT class with Isle of Wight Volunteer Rescue Squad. I’ve begun the application process and have started my initial rides with the rescue squad here in Fredericksburg, where I’ll be able to use my National Registry Certification.”
Hewett’s experience helping students began five months after his graduation in 2016 from CNU, where he served as a university fellow of student engagement.
“I assisted with the development and execution of orientation programs for freshmen and transfer students, conducted meetings with students to find ways to get them engaged on campus and assisted the Student Affairs office with the goals of the department,” he explained.
By November of that year, he had transitioned into the position of transfer enrollment coordinator, where he traveled throughout Virginia to recruit for the college. He served in that role for a little more than a year and a half before accepting his current position.
He still plans to pursue his passion to become a practitioner by taking some prerequisite graduate courses while working.
Although Paul D. Camp was a stepping stone leading to the rewarding work he now carries out for students, he believes that his community college education set him on the right track.
“PDCCC gets a lot of credit for helping me,” he said. “My anatomy, physiology and biology courses instilled that passion in medicine and gave me the extra edge I needed while pursuing my NREMT certification.”
Since Hewett has so recently been a student himself, he can identify with them, lending a fresh perspective when helping them make their way through the educational process. He shared some firsthand words of wisdom.
“First, ask questions of your professor,” he said. “Second, be honest with yourself—if you need help or want to change your major—don’t scare yourself out of it.”
“And lastly, make friends everywhere you go. Don’t burn the bridges you build with people, but rather learn how to edify them as life goes on. Value others, love them well, and strive for excellence in everything.”
Wendy Harrison is the public relations specialist at Paul D. Camp Community College. She can be reached at email@example.com.