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San Joaquin Valley College Blog

Approaching the Future Together: The Sanchez Sisters Choose the Clinical Medical Assisting Program

June 6, 2023

The black computer screen on Zoom comes alive with two beautiful young women, both participants in the Clinical Medical Assisting program.

The one on the left, Daniela, has her dark brown hair pulled back and is wearing a pair of black framed glasses; her smile is warm and gentle. Her sister Marisela is on the right; her dark brown hair falls gently down in a wave around her shoulders; her smile is equally warm with a brightness, a twinkle in it. These are the Sanchez sisters, two years apart in age, but aside from the glasses and the way they wear their hair, they are so similar looking you would think they were twins.

Even though they are not technically twins, they tell a story about being raised virtually as twins by their parents, dressed alike from the age of three, sharing a room, “the girls” as they were called, doing everything together.

As we introduce ourselves and prepare to begin the conversation, they start to look at each other and giggle, a secretive kind of giggle that instantly tells me they know where each other’s funny bone is. I ask, “What’s going on?” In between more giggles Marisela composes herself and says, “Our dog is in the room!” clearly wanting their attention.

They clearly have so much fun together, wouldn’t it make sense to make it easier to go to a training college together? Making a challenging program ahead of them more fun, knowing they have each other to help them through.  They began their studies in the Clinical Medical Assisting program on January 17th and plan to graduate in March 2024. This is their story.


Where are you from? Tell me a little bit about your background.

(M) We were born in LA and raised in Pasadena. Our family moved to Pomona three years ago.


How many are in your family?

(M) We have one older brother and an older sister. I’m the third child and Daniela is the baby.

(D) We’re ten years apart from our older siblings.


How old are you now?

(D) We’re two years apart from each other. She’s 20 and I’m 18 years old.


Did you go to elementary and high school together?

(M) Yes, but when we moved to Pomona three years ago, we were in high school for only a month before COVID hit. So, we spent a lot of time together at home.


How would you each describe yourself?

(M) I’m bubbly, I get along with everyone, I like to cheer people on, a real cheerleader type.

(D) I’m kinda shy. When I first started at SJVC I was very shy. But then I figured, why not be friends with everyone, so I’m more outgoing.


How did you decide on the Clinical Medical Assisting program?

(M) At first, I was looking at becoming an ultrasound technician. Then our mom’s friend, whose daughter was an admissions advisor at SJVC, told us about the Clinical Medical Assisting program there.

(D) Our older sister goes to SJVC too; she brought home a folder so we looked at it. She is taking prerequisites for the Dental Hygiene program.  At the time I had no idea what I wanted to do. I looked at a lot of schools, I looked at vet tech programs. It was Marisela who convinced me to go to the Clinical Medical Assisting program.


What do you like about the Clinical Medical Assisting program so far?

(D) I really like being hands on, having a connection to the patients. I’m glad it’s the first place I landed to figure out what I want to do in the medical field.

(M) I like that you learn something new every day. You can take what you’re learning now and just keep going further.


How did your classmates react when they found out you were sisters in the same class?

(D&M) They thought it was cool to have someone, to be together. But they still see us as two different people.


What are you thinking about doing next?

(M) I’m thinking of working in a medical spa, or a lasik office, but my top choice is to get an Associate’s degree and work in an OBGYN office. I also thought about going back to school to become a diagnostic medical sonographer.

(D) I think I’ll work in a family practice. Or eventually go into nursing.  I really want to work for a while and see what I want to do after that.


What would you like to say to other potential students, maybe to other siblings as well about your experience going to school together?

(M) Just do it!

(D) It’s good to have someone there you know you can turn to. But there are still plenty of people to go to for help at SJVC. I just think having your own sister there is better!

(M) It all goes by so fast. It’s a really nice program. It’s very interactive, you’re always doing something. It’s also a very friendly and welcoming place to everyone.

(D) I like that we can go to each other and compare stuff. We’re also really honest with each other, which helps during the training part. Like when we were learning to give shots – when she gave me a shot I would tell her right away if it hurt!  (they giggle)


Q:  It sounds like going to school together has been a definite plus.  And fun.  Whatever you end up doing separately in the real world, I’m sure you’ll do well! All the best of luck to each of you!

(D&M) Thank you!

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