Taffy McKnight of Fremont gets instruction from Jolene Meyers during a recent Office Procedures class.
To educate prospective students about the challenging but rewarding and ever-changing administrative assistant profession, Terra State Community College is offering four informational sessions in March.
“The term secretary has become outdated because the role of those who provide support in business and medical offices has expanded greatly in the past decade or so,” said Jolene Meyers, Associate Professor in the Office Administration Program. “Today’s administrative assistants are responsible for a variety of administrative and clerical duties necessary to run an organization efficiently.”
Besides serving as information and communication managers for an office, they also plan events, schedule meetings and appointments, organize and maintain paper and electronic files, manage projects, conduct research, disseminate information using the telephone, mail services, websites and email, and handle travel and guest arrangements.
Terra State’s program prepares students for gainful employment as administrative assistants by earning an Associate of Applied Business with majors in executive and/or medical office administration. The curriculum is designed to offer courses that enhance students’ technical skills, communication skills, and leadership/management skills with an emphasis on professional work ethic.
The job outlook for professionally-trained administrative assistants is encouraging, according to Meyers. “While developments in office technology are certain to continue, there will be an increased demand for administrative assistants who are adaptable and versatile,” she said. “Furthermore, many administrative duties are of a personal, interactive nature and are not easily automated. Because technology cannot substitute for these personal skills, well-trained administrative assistants will continue to play a key role in organizations.”