Coreion “Corey” Watts knew he wanted to major in a health profession.
And it didn’t take long for the fourth-year respiratory care student from Columbus to decide that he wanted to work in healthcare, a stable field where he would always have career opportunities.
Narrowing down where to pursue his degree, however, was a decision that took a bit longer.
“I knew I didn’t want to go to Ohio State,” he said. “I’d kind of grown up around that and wasn’t interested. But I did think about Toledo early because a friend was going there for nursing.”
A high school athlete, Corey also had a scholarship offer to attend a smaller private college to run track.
“Initially, I was only track-minded because that was something I really wanted to do. I wasn’t thinking long term,” Watts said. “But they didn’t have the stuff I wanted to do. They didn’t have much as far as science or medical classes — not even in graduate programs.”
UToledo’s breadth of health profession programs and its reputation for clinical education were key decision factors as he contemplated his future.
Now Watts is sharing his experience as the newest face of UToledo’s television commercial series. The spot begins running this month throughout Ohio as well as on streaming channels and YouTube, presenting a quick peek at his college decision process.
“Filming the commercial was fun and different. I really understand now why it takes so long to make movies,” he said. “They have to set up and get the right angle and everything. It felt like it took 100 shots just to get one thing right.”
Watts began his clinicals this fall and will participate in the University’s interprofessional education program at the simulation center on Health Science Campus.
“Corey is an extremely dedicated student,” said Dr. Nicole McKenzie, UToledo’s Respiratory Care program director and assistant professor. “I think he’s going to make an excellent respiratory therapist because he is so personable and passionate about helping people. His bedside manner will quickly make him a favorite among staff and patients.”
Watts is excited about putting his course lessons into real-world practice.
“I’m really looking forward to applying my knowledge and what I learned over the summer into the actual clinicals,” Watts said. “If I’d have gone somewhere else, I wouldn’t have had the chance to do something like this. It feels like the start of my career. It’s like I’m a step closer to what I’m actually going to be doing.”
McKenzie added that Watts is a student role model for the program.
“We love having Corey in our courses because he is always friendly and eager to learn,” she said. “Future Rockets should learn from Corey – approach your coursework with a positive attitude and stay dedicated to your goals.”