#TESTIMONIALTUESDAY: A Year of Reflection- 2018 Transitions (Ep. 2)
If You’re Interested in Massage Therapy Training Contact AMBI in Vienna, VA
“Welcome to the American Massage & Bodywork Institute. Stasia speaking. How may I help you?” This has been my AMBI mantra for almost three years as I’ve maneuvered between multiple job roles and supported the growth of the school. Since AMBI opened its doors, we have welcomed students from many different cultures and life stages to assist them in finding a new lease on life. Helping someone discover their potential and live their dream is immensely rewarding.
Each passing year at AMBI allows for great professional and personal growth for both students and staff equally. Working as a licensed and practicing Massage Therapist for 11 years was a wonderful period of time spent honing my techniques and preparing me for the ultimate humbling experience: teaching. I did not enter into it lightly, and I pushed myself to improve with each new day. I set expectations high for myself and my students, and I encourage them to do the same.
An unfortunate reality is that so many of our students have had family and friends with low or no expectations of them; we at AMBI, however, hold them in the highest regard. Our students come from vastly different backgrounds, cultures, families, and careers. Still, with all their differences, they form a cohesive unit and support one another as a family within a month or two.
I’ve been granted a very unique position within the AMBI dynamic. When I first came on board in January 2016, I provided front desk and administrative assistant support, with the expectation of co-teaching my first class in seven months. When August arrived, I was quite nervous and had no idea what to expect. On the first day of the class, there were nine students; three were ESL students, and one of them was completely blind. Six made it all the way through the curriculum, graduated, passed the national exam, and are currently gainfully employed—including the visually impaired student. I had successfully taught my first class.
Fast forward to 2018, and the momentum hasn’t changed. In May of this year, I attended a training through the Department of Education ahead of AMBI’s approval to administer Federal Financial Aid. I was offered and I accepted the promotion to Financial Aid Director, but I am also happily co-teaching still. Not only do I have the honor of teaching others the art of massage, but I have the opportunity to assist students in financially fulfilling their goals. One by one, they enter my office hopeful, but skeptical. By the time they leave, most of them are beaming and eager to begin their journey.
The amount of respect I hold toward these students is immense. At times, hearing their struggles can be heartbreaking. Their stories are varied and endless: divorce, abuse, absent parents, escaping a violent home country, financial hardship, death of family and friends, homelessness. What gives me hope is knowing these individuals are turning their awful experiences into something positive for themselves and others. They have chosen AMBI—and those on staff—as the guiding light toward the path to success. I am humbled by their perseverance and dedication, and I offer them my full commitment to be their rock as they transition into this sacred field.
Welcome to the American Massage & Bodywork Institute. Stasia speaking. How may I help you?