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Featured Alumnus Daniel Purington
“I really enjoyed my time at MassBay. It gave me the skills and education I needed to succeed in my current job and to ultimately get the career I want. I’m grateful for my experience at MassBay.”
Hometown: Colrain, Massachusetts
Major: Biotechnology, 2009 – 2011
Daniel Purington has a unique job that limits his ability to come to class on a regular schedule. As a Surgical Recovery Coordinator for the New England Organ Bank, Daniel never knows when he’ll be summoned to surgically remove tissue, bone or organ to be used by a patient in need. While the organ bank provides exciting and important work, it is quite different than a typical 9-5 job.
“When I was looking at colleges I needed flexibility, and I needed an intimate setting,” says Daniel, who was enrolled in the Biotechnology program at MassBay from spring 2009 – fall 2011. Since MassBay was located just minutes from his office at the New England Organ Bank in Waltham, it was the convenience that led him to MassBay and “the flexibility of professors and classes kept me there.”
Daniel explained his role with the Organ Bank to each of his professors at the beginning of each semester to let them know that he may be forced to leave classes or miss classes during the semester. Their willingness to recognize the uniqueness of Daniel’s situation helped him complete the work that enabled Daniel to succeed at MassBay.
Another factor in his success, he says, was the tutoring MassBay offers: “Teachers in the sciences are the actual tutors, so for someone like me who has to miss classes, this is huge.” You can get tutoring sessions direct from the horse’s mouth, and not worry about lessons being lost in translation. It was a great help to me during my time there.”
As it turned out, the job that required him to miss classes at MassBay became his full-fledged calling. Just two months after the devastating earthquake in Haiti, Daniel embarked on a medical relief trip with the Harvard Humanitarian Center. He traveled to Fond Parisien, roughly 12 miles outside of Port-au-Prince, working triage in a medical emergency tent. It was a remarkable experience that caused him to miss 1 ½ weeks of school. “Everyone was very supportive,” says Daniel. “My professors emailed me the work I needed. It really speaks to the professors understanding who you are and what your needs are.”
Daniel transferred his MassBay credits to UMass-Boston, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology in June 2012. He hopes to attend medical school at UMass-Worcester or enter a physician’s assistant program next fall. He estimates that he has completed 60 – 70% of the prerequisite classes necessary for medical school and for physician assistant programs at MassBay.
“I really enjoyed my time at MassBay,” he says. “It gave me the skills and education I needed to succeed in my current job and to ultimately get the career I want. I’m grateful for my experience at MassBay.”
Daniel Purington attended MassBay from spring 2009 – fall 2011, transferring to UMass-Boston. He is a Surgical Recovery Coordinator at the New England Organ Bank in Waltham and hopes to attend medical school or a physician’s assistant program in 2013. Photos from his trip to Haiti in 2010 are below: