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San Joaquin Valley College Blog

MAKING A CAREER AT SJVC: The Life of Alice Rodriguez

November 21, 2023

If you were a student in the last 30 years at San Joaquin Valley College, at some point you talked with the Office of Administration or Student Services or the Registrar’s office or maybe someone in the Executive office. There’s a pretty good chance, then, at some point, you would have talked or met with Alice Rodriguez. Alice, who is currently working as a Payroll Analyst, has worn many hats over the last 30 years at SJVCi, the parent company of Ember Education, SJVC and Carrington College. She is as loyal as her career is long.


Tell me how you came to work at Ember Education.

Well, first I came as a student. I was in the Clinical Medical Assisting program at SJVC, which at the time included both working in a medical front office as well as assisting in medical visits. When I finished my externship, someone from SJVC’s Career Services office called and said they needed someone at the last minute to step in for a receptionist who had taken a leave of absence.  I filled in until they returned. I have been with the company ever since!


Why do you think you stayed rather than leave for other jobs?

The values I identified from other employees remained strong despite the changes that came as the years went by. We all share the same work ethic, the same values, and goals, not only in business but in our personal lives as well. We go above and beyond what is required of us.


You’ve held many positions in those thirty years. I’m going to list them: let me know if I leave anything out! Receptionist, Student Services, Secretary (to the Registrar and Dean), Financial Aid Advisor, Campus Administrative Assistant, Corporate HR Assistant in the Administration Office, and now Payroll Analyst.  What is it that kept you there through all those different roles?

I have gained experience from each position I held. I have had the opportunity to advance and increase my skills.


Do you keep in touch with any students after they have graduated?

Not so much in touch after they graduate, but I’m delighted if I run into someone; it’s nice to chat about their experience. I was very much in touch with students while they were in school. At one point, I did workers’ comp reports so I was involved with campus injuries. I attended student events; for example, student orientation, graduation ceremonies, and student program events.


How has SJVC grown in the time you’ve been there?

There are so many more campuses, which makes the student group so much larger. There are many new programs. I used to, but I don’t get around to the campuses as much.

How do you feel about this moment in time?  Can you believe it’s been 30 years?

No, not really! I can’t believe 30 years have gone by so fast. SJVC has been an awesome place for my career growth. How I feel about this moment in time: I will continue working in the PA position that I enjoy.

Do you have anything else you would like to add? Is there anyone in particular you would like to thank and show your appreciation for?

I’m grateful for having known the Perrys, Mike and Mark, and their parents, who were always out and about talking to and checking up on both students and employees.  They created a very interactive and positive culture.



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