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San Joaquin Valley College Blog

Faculty Q&A with Clinical Medical Assisting Instructor Daniel Guardiola

October 20, 2021

SJVC Medical Assisting Instructor Daniel GuardiolaDaniel Guardiola is a new instructor in the Clinical Medical Assisting program at SJVC’s Atascadero campus. He started teaching six months ago after working in various roles in the medical field, including as a medical assistant himself. Here, Daniel shares how he came to SJVC, what he loves about medical assisting and teaching, and how SJVC inspires and pushes both his students and himself.


Tell us a little about yourself.

Hi, my name is Daniel Guardiola. I am 37 years old. I live in Paso Robles, California and I have a 5-year-old daughter named Nora. I enjoy traveling, making music, and BBQing with friends and family.


Have you always been interested in the medical assisting field and/or in teaching?

I have worked as a medical assistant/X-Ray technician and a medical scribe for the past 10 years. I’ve always had an interest in teaching and since I’ve trained many medical assistants throughout my career, I figured I could translate that experience into the classroom.


When did you decide to pursue a career in medical assisting instruction?

I have been teaching the CMA program now for about 6 months, and prior to that is when I decided to pursue a career in medical assisting instruction. Before working for SJVC, I wanted a career shift where I could use my knowledge and experience, and teaching provided that opportunity perfectly.


What were you doing before teaching at SJVC?

Prior to SJVC, I was working at an orthopedic surgeon’s office as a Medical Assistant and a Radiographer. Before that, I worked as a medical assistant with experience in dermatology, podiatry, and urgent care settings.


Why did you choose to teach at SJVC? What do you enjoy most about it, and what do you find most challenging? 

I chose to teach at SJVC because I heard they were a top-rated medical assisting program in the state, and I wanted to bring my knowledge and expertise to the table to help improve the lives of our students.

I enjoy working with students from all different walks of life. The thing I enjoy the most is knowing that I’m helping make an impact on their lives and their families’ lives.

The best part is the feeling of gratitude you receive from students whose lives you are positively impacting.


How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your duties?

COVID-19 has had some challenges to the in-class learning experience, but for the most part we’ve overcome the challenges and have adapted to the circumstance. During distance learning, it was frustrating not being able to teach in person for hands-on training.


Was there a moment in your career that reinforced you made the right decision to work in this field?

While working as a medical assistant, I enjoyed the satisfaction of helping patients with their healthcare needs. Now I get to help train future medical assistants, so that they can make a difference in people’s lives.


Is there an SJVC instructor, student, or staff member that you’d like to acknowledge?

Yes! I’d like to give a shout out to Aubri Kouklis. She is the other SJVC instructor at the Atascadero campus. She is an amazing instructor and has inspired me to become a better teacher. Not only is she knowledgeable and experienced, both as a medical assistant and an instructor, but she genuinely cares about our students and their success.


What advice do you have for someone thinking about going to school?

Don’t limit yourself. Only you can make the necessary changes to get a better career and improve your life. It is possible.


What do you want people to know about going to SJVC?

SJVC offers a great medical assisting program that provides hands-on training, knowledgeable instructors, and a great curriculum.


What’s next for you?

I’m currently studying for my Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and after that, I plan on attending P.A. (Physicians Assistants) school.

Read Our Career Guide On Medical Assisting in California.

Have you always wanted to work in a medical setting, but don’t want to attend school for years? Then a job as a medical assistant might be a good career for you.

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