Brooke Beeson, Class of 2000Sep 22, 2023
In early July, Brooke Coleman Beeson was promoted to the position of Director of Radiology at Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist on the Lexington Medical Center campus in Davidson County.
She may be over all of the imaging now, but she remembers where it all started.
As a Henry County, Virginia high school senior, Beeson had offers from several universities.
“I was on a business track, but as I got closer to high school graduation, I didn’t have a clue about what I wanted t do,” she said. “Do I jump into a four-year university at this point?”
Beeson opted to enroll at a local community college, where she quickly realized accounting and business were not for her.
“I wanted job security, and to help people, and to never be bored,” she said, changing her focus to healthcare.
Beeson crossed the state line, established residency in North Carolina, and enrolled at Rockingham Community College.
“RCC is a wonderful place, there is so much here to offer. There are so many basics here. I felt so adequately prepared both professionally and academically for everything else I did,” she said.
“The instructors are fantastic. I always felt like their doors were open and they wanted to see me succeed. It was really a good fit,” she said.
Once at RCC, Beeson discovered the field of radiology. That program was not offered at RCC, and Forsyth Tech was not finished setting up its 18-month Radiologic Science program – the college’s first accelerated program.
Beeson opted to stay at RCC. She earned her Associate in Arts in General Studies in May 2000, and then immediately enrolled at Forsyth Tech.
“I had all the basics out of the way from RCC, so I could focus just on the Radiology program there,” she said.
Two months before earning her Associate in Science degree from Forsyth Tech in December 2001, she began working full-time at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.
Several years later, Beeson realized she still wanted more, and set her sights on more education.
She returned to RCC to take Spanish courses “because I had such a good experience the first time around,” she said.
Beeson then transferred those credits to High Point University where she enrolled in evening classes.
She continued to work full-time, juggling her schedule to make sure she could still be a mom and a wife at her Stoneville home.
“We made it work,” she said, adding that she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Human Relations with a Concentration in Business from HPU.
Strategically waiting for her daughter to reach a more independent age, in 2020 Beeson finally started working on her Master’s in Public Administration with a Concentration in Health Care and Government, from Liberty University, which she earned.
“Prior to [my current position with Atrium Health], I was in the imaging manager role in Winston-Salem. I managed just X-ray. I transferred over to Lexington as director of all of radiology, which encompasses all branches of radiology, including MR, CT, and ultrasound,” she said.
“I now run the day-to-day operations, budgeting, productivity, quality metrics across the region. I do a lot of educational outreach in the area and with the local community college,” she continued.
Beeson is a guest lab instructor with Forsyth Tech, Wake’s main feeder program to radiological science, and is working with McMichael High School to have students tour Forsyth’s facilities. She wants to engage middle schoolers as well, because outreach “has to be early,” she acknowledged.
“The potential in the imaging field is limitless, and I’m a great example of that,” Beeson said. “There are some four-year degrees in medical imaging, the largest being UNC-Chapel Hill, but the minimum requirement is a two-year degree.”
What’s unique about Beeson’s career path is that it has enabled a very strategic pursuit of each step.
“Now I’m 44, still very young, but I’m in a place in my life where I feel like I’m ready to do some of my best work,” she said. “And I attribute all of that to my start here at RCC.”
~Story and photo by Gerri Hunt, RCC Director of Public Information