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Arnot Health
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Sarah Leipham

Liberal Arts Major(s): Political Science, Psychology
Hometown: Horseheads, New York

What was the best part of your experience?

Having the opportunity to learn more about the non-clinical aspects of healthcare was invaluable. The healthcare setting is one that has always fascinated me, and it is clear that both medical and non-medical professionals play a role in ensuring that quality healthcare is provided to patients. I was able to work in the Patient Experience department specifically, creating marketing materials to educate staff, aiding in aligning policy with Joint Commission standards, and getting experience with a number of consulting practices. Perhaps the best part was leading the Patient Experience team in planning our booth for the Employee Wellness Fair, where staff had the opportunity to take part in an "Empathy Obstacle Course" to truly put themselves in their patients' shoes. Having the opportunity to learn so much and even make an impact along the way was incredibly rewarding.

I was able to apply the interests I have garnered in the classroom to a real world setting and gained confidence in my ability to pursue and be successful in the healthcare setting.

How did this experience impact you academically?

This experience showed me that my studies in Political Science and Psychology are very applicable to the realm of healthcare. Here at Penn State, I have tailored my study of Psychology to the industrial-organizational focus, and the very leadership practices and organizational dynamic I have learned about are ones that I was able to see in practice at Arnot Health. Additionally, the interest in policy that I have garnered through Political Science is one that I was able to further explore and understand through this experience. I was able to apply the interests I have garnered in the classroom to a real world setting and gained confidence in my ability to pursue and be successful in the healthcare setting.

How will this experience impact your career goals?

This experience greatly impacted my career goals through real-world experience and networking with other individuals in the field of non-clinical healthcare. I have had the goal of obtaining a Master's degree in Health Administration, prompting my initial interest in this internship. The experience proved to me that I have the ability not only to be successful in that field, but also to enjoy it and the work it entails. Additionally, this internship also opened the door to considering other related career and further schooling possibilities. I became incredibly interested in the legalities of healthcare operations through this experience, thus bringing about the possibility of perhaps going to law school and pursuing healthcare law. The opportunities are truly endless, and I am so thankful for this internship and how excited it made me for the future.

For more information on internships for Liberal Arts students, visit our website.
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