BIG RAPIDS - Carl Byington knew he wanted to attend college at Ferris State University. In fact, he says he was dead set on becoming a Bulldog. So, when his acceptance letter arrived in the mail, he was on cloud nine.
Byington wouldn’t be the first in his family to become a Bulldog. Attending Ferris has been a family affair beginning with his great-grandfather, Stanley Byington, who earned a Pharmacy degree. The family legacy does not stop there for the Byron Center native. His grandfather, Dick Byington; father, Jim Byington; and uncle, John Byington, all earned Pharmacy degrees from Ferris.
“I have wanted to attend school at Ferris ever since hearing stories about the university’s progress from a local college to a statewide university,” Carl says. “My uncle helped found Ferris’ Student Government Association, and he used to talk about the concerts and fund raisers they held; and my grandpa would talk about football games.”
It’s no wonder Carl called Ferris home.
“By far, the best times of my life have been at Ferris,” he says. “This institution is absolutely wonderful, not only academically but with extracurricular activities, too. Everyone has something they can be a part of. Ferris is leading the way in being a diverse college.”
Finding his niche at Ferris is why Carl opted to change his major from pre-Pharmacy to Medical Laboratory Science.
It was a presentation to his Chemistry class during his second year of college by Clinical Coordinator Daniel deRegnier that opened the door to a new possibility. A tour of the College of Allied Health Sciences laboratory sealed the deal.
Carl says he couldn’t be happier with his career choice.
“I can’t describe how much satisfaction comes with this job,” he says, explaining his work helps physicians with their diagnoses of patients’ problems. “It feels awesome to know my skills and abilities can help determine whether a patient gets better.
“At the end of the day, it makes you feel good about what you do.”
He credits his success to the faculty and staff of Ferris’ Medical Technology program, which prepares graduates to hit the ground running upon completing their degree, he says.
For example, prior to completing their degree with an internship, Medical Laboratory Science students are required to participate in a semester of Simulated Laboratory to prepare them for the daily rigors of work life.
"The “sim lab” bridges the gap from being a student to being a medical technologist,” he says, adding he wishes people were more familiar with the Medical Technology profession.
While professionals in this field do not get a lot of patient interaction, the career choice is good for someone who enjoys solving puzzles. He explains if you enjoy being given a problem with the responsibility of finding a solution, this career might interest you.
Carl also places his chips on Ferris as prospective students’ best bet when choosing a college.
“A diverse college is a successful college…any student even remotely considering Ferris would be crazy not to attend school here.”
Carl’s success is a good indicator, too. Now that he has completed his internship at Mid-Michigan Medical Center in Midland, the world is his oyster as he pursues job opportunities within the Medical Laboratory Science profession.