My summer internship with United Neighborhood Health Services

Caitlyn, a senior from Hillwood high School, writes in this entry that her experiences in the Academy of Health Science and the internship she completed over the summer with United Neighborhood Health Services (UNHS) enhanced her academic focus and motivated her to pursue a career in nursing. UNHS is a committed partner of Metro Nashville Public Schools, offering internship opportunities to many high school students every year and operating health clinics in several of Nashville’s schools to promote public health.

I am a senior from Hillwood High School and was awarded the opportunity this summer to be one of three students selected from Hillwood to participate in an internship provided by United Neighborhood Health Services.  My name is Mary P., but most people call me Caitlyn. I am 17 and by being able to have this experience, I am ready to get to college and start a wonderful career in the health field as a nurse. The five weeks I participated in the internship were not only a great way to expose me to what a health career field would be like but also opened my eyes completely to how many people just in Nashville are in need of medical attention.  My goal is to become the best nurse I can so I can help those people in need. The opportunity I was given was a once-in-a-lifetime chance, and I know that I am extremely lucky to be offered this internship.

In the 5 weeks with UNHS we never had a boring time. The first week we spent going over rules and expectations they had for us. Weeks two through five were spent in their clinics. Every day we spent learning and doing something different, and the funny part is that it didn’t feel at the time like we were learning anything.  Actually looking back on it, we learned more than we thought. Being able to have this experience not only taught me how to perform tasks I will need in the medical field, but it also introduced me to many different kinds of people and cultures. Many people asked me why I would want to waste half of my summer on something like that, and at first I was kind of feeling the same way, but after getting in there and getting a feel the first week of how everything was going to be, I never once complained. I didn’t see it as a waste of time like some who didn’t participate.  I saw it as a small stepping stone to help me better my future, and that’s exactly what it did. I do have to say that I think if it wasn’t for the UNHS internship, I might still have questions about what I want my career to be. Now there is no question about it. The whole thing was a wonderful experience, and if they decided to continue on with the internship next year, I would highly recommend to anyone.

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