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Employee finds a new career in a familiar place

The Saint Raphael Campus kitchen, where Michael Ordazzo started his hospital career, is a just a few yards from his current office. But the path Ordazzo took to get to his position as manager of Anatomic Pathology wasn’t exactly a stroll up the hall.

In 2002, while in high school, Ordazzo began working per diem in the cafeteria kitchen at the former Hospital of Saint Raphael.

He continued working there after graduation and during summers and college breaks, until a lab aide position opened in the Laboratory in 2004.

Ordazzo was pursuing a chemistry degree, but still wasn’t sure what he wanted to do with it.

By the time he graduated with his BS in chemistry in 2008, Ordazzo had decided the laboratory was where he wanted to be.

“It’s rewarding to know that we can have an effect on patients’ outcomes,” he said. “That’s why we’re all here.”

While working in the SRC Laboratory full time, Ordazzo took advantage of tuition reimbursement to pursue his master’s degree in biology.

“Without the tuition reimbursement, I’m not sure I would have been able to swing the cost of my graduate studies,” he said.

After earning his MS degree, Ordazzo received more help from the hospital – in the form of on-the-job training that helped him pass the exam to become a histotechnician, a role that involves preparing tissue samples for examination by a pathologist.

In 2015, Ordazzo became manager of a small pathology lab in Fairfield, but continued working per diem as a histotechnician at the SRC. He returned to the SRC Laboratory full time in 2019, becoming Anatomic Pathology manager. “I’ve been here so long, it feels like family,” he said.