PCC / News / July 24, 2006

Hatago’s future comes into focus

Photos and Story by

Levi

Kimberly Hatago '05 Ophthalmic Medical Technology Hopes to return someday to teach at PCC

You could say that it took Kim Hatago a while to see her future clearly. She was smart, but high school just never seemed to click for her. She dropped out and got a job at Pizza Hut. In time she was a supervisor at the restaurant.

"I knew I didn’t want to do that for the rest of my life," Kim says, "and I also knew that going back to school was the only way to change things. PCC had a program that would let me earn my G.E.D. and then continue on, so I signed up."

Then one day she had, well, a vision. "I opened up the PCC catalog and saw something about eyeballs," Kim remembers, "and I thought it might be kind of cool. I wanted to get involved in the medical field, but I didn’t want to deal with a lot of blood! That’s how I wound up in the Ophthalmic Medical Technology program."

Today, Kim is the eye care professional you see before the eye doctor, the one who performs the preliminary eye exams, dilates your pupils and takes your history. She works at Oregon Eye Specialists, who hired her even before she graduated.

"I did my practicum here," says Kim, "and they liked my work, I guess, because I started my job at OES one week after I graduated! It’s really great that PCC helps you get that kind of experience while you’re going to school. I’ve never had the kind of support I found at PCC. My classmates are now my friends, and the teachers are awesome. Everyone at PCC was always there for me

About The Author: James Hill

James G. Hill, an award-winning journalist and public relations writer, has been the Communications Specialist for the Office of Public Affairs at Portland Community College since November of 1999. A graduate of Portland State University, J... more »