Katie Jensen, a senior at Kennedy High School, has always had a particular interest in working in health care. The big issue? She had no idea which branch of medicine or what medical profession to choose. Luckily, internships in the MedQuarter Regional Medical District provided the insight and guidance she was seeking.
Continuous Learning at the MedQ
During a visit to one of the hospitals in the MedQ in 2018, she learned of an internship opportunity in the oncology clinic.
Katie applied through Workplace Learning Connection at Kirkwood Community College. Her high school counselors promote the program, which connects students with internships and job shadow opportunities.
“I would recommend doing an internship when you aren’t sure about the division of the medical field. It’s the perfect opportunity to see what your day could be like in the job of so many different professions,” Katie said.
Her oncology internship had a 45-hour requirement. She rotated throughout the Hall-Perrine Cancer Center, working with chemotherapy nurses and in the oncology clinic, radiation and even the operating room.
Katie enjoyed her first internship so much that in 2019 she did another 45-hour rotation in pediatrics at Mercy Medical Center. She spent time in the neonatal intensive care unit, labor and delivery, pediatric clinic and in-patient clinic. She even attended a live birth on her first day!
Guidance for Future Success
Katie loved her internship experiences here. She learned so much.
“They were willing to answer all of my questions, and they didn’t talk to me like I was a little kid. They understood and were able to give me really good advice too,” Katie said. “I was never pushed off to the side. Everyone was super engaged in helping me learn, and they were also very warm and welcoming.”
Because she rotated between four or five departments, the staff collaborated on scheduling to make sure Katie had a top-notch experience.
The nurse practitioners and other medical professionals Katie worked with encouraged her to pursue her passion for health care and offered guidance and advice on her education and career.
Her MedQ internships helped Katie make some important life decisions. She will pursue a nursing degree at Carroll University in Waukesha, Wisconsin, where she will also play volleyball.
She may be back though. Katie hopes to work or volunteer at the MedQ in the future.