Hi everyone! I am so fortunate to have the incredible opportunity to intern with the Academic Programs Department of Hebrew Senior Life .
My internship is quite unique as I get to experience various sectors that Hebrew SeniorLife has to offer and I have met many amazing individuals so far . This week marks my fourth week with my internship and I have learned a lot already!
To start off, Hebrew SeniorLife is a senior care organization that is rooted in Jewish heritage. HSL promotes the independence of all seniors and strives to transform every aspect of the aging experience for the better. Hebrew SeniorLife is redefining the aging experience through curiosity, creativity, and belief in a better way through their innovative programs and initiatives. Hebrew SeniorLife is an integrated, eight-site system of health care, housing, research and teaching that serves thousands of seniors in the Greater Boston area and beyond. This unique and comprehensive system is aimed at expanding choices for adults as they age and improving their quality of life. From the Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research to innovative housing options, each component of this system is designed to help keep seniors independent in the community for as long as possible and, when necessary, to provide the best quality long-term care. I currently work on a hybrid basis, sometimes going to the Roslindale campus and other times going to the Brookline location.
In my internship, I have assisted in preparing training and marketing materials for the CNA program, ensuring that the program is running smoothly from an administrative academic lens. In addition, I am in the process of creating participation surveys for the participants to fill before and after their training to provide positives and constructive recommendations on what to improve to the CNA administrative group which will further aid in allowing for better and equitable practices as an organization. I have also been helping out with their digital literacy and assessment program where we teach HSL staff basic digital literacy skills so they can use these skills at their job and life overall. This is such a meaningful and important part of my internship so far because it really is the gift that keeps giving; these staff members will now be able to teach others the skills that they have acquire through this program and I have learned how to be an effective teacher and really help problem solve in a variety of situations. My specific tasks for my internship vary each week but what I have listed above are some of the things I have and currently am working on.
One of my favorite parts of my work so far is spending time with seniors in Brookline. I help plan and assist with activities for senior to enjoy from helping them bead jewelry to painting our feelings on canvas. I enjoy talking to them and getting to know more about their lives. We all enjoy each other’s company so much and it makes me feel really great everytime I come in to see them. It has also taught me a lot about setting boundaries and learning how to be patient with others and myself, skills that I can always keep working on. Starting next week, I will also be helping with art therapy projects with patients at the Hebrew Rehabilitation Center in Roslindale, working on reducing feelings of isolation and building communication and concentration skills.
By the end of my internship, I want to be able to learn more about grant processes and grant coordination. Through creating marketing and promotional material for the CNA grant-based training program to coordinating interviews and meetings with potential participants, I will gain a deeper understanding of the administrative work that goes into a training program like this. In addition to that, I will participate in grant prep meetings that will give me the insider perspective on the grant process and how the coordination happens behind the scenes. I want to be able to have strong understanding of the moving parts in a healthcare setting, so working in a hands on environment will provide me the knowledge of how different administrators and healthcare professionals interact and how administrative tasks are handled holistically. As someone who will be applying to medical school soon, I know that administrative skills are important to keep operations running smoothly and a successful doctor should have that as well as a patient centered care approach so being able to balance both in this internship will allow me to better prep me for my future career. Through interacting with different administrators and professionals, I want to not only be able to practice my interpersonal skills but to also learn improve on cultural awareness. Interacting with a variety of individuals of all ages and backgrounds has allowed me to gain a better appreciation for others but also learn a lot as a person. More specifically, I hope to continue to learn valuable life lessons and skills from the seniors I work with in addition to teaching them some of my favorite hobbies and skills. The exchange of information and experiences has been really rewarding so far so I hope to continue this valuable experience.
It has only been four weeks and I already feel that I have learned a lot of transferrable skills and life tools that I will use in the future and I am looking forward to the next couple of weeks.