This month, we are spotlighting Riley Fox, a senior major from Davenport, Iowa, who is on the Health Services Management Track of the Health Sciences major. This year, Riley was able to have an internship at ChildServe.
I am on the Health Services Management track in the Health Sciences major with a Business minor. I came into Drake knowing that I wanted to help patients but didn't want to treat them directly, so I thought I wanted to do Pharmacy. It wasn't until I was exposed to the Health Services Management track during my first-year Health Sciences course that I realized the opportunities that were out there for me and that this was the perfect fit for what I wanted to do in my career.
As an intern at ChildServe, I have had the opportunity to see and experience various parts of the organization. I have done projects in the marketing department, volunteer department, and have even been able to sit in on a number of executive council meetings.
ChildServe is a fairly large organization with a lot of moving parts -- they have an inpatient unit, rehabilitation units, supported living communities, and respite care, just to name a few. My project this year has been to put together a proposal for key stakeholders that compiles all of the necessary information in order to get a facility dog program in their inpatient unit. This would mean they would have a dog that would work with all of the patients to help achieve better health outcomes. I have researched how a program like this would operate, different training organizations, types of dogs, cost, and anything that is necessary to get this program up and running.
While not related to my project, through my experience at ChildServe, I was able to help out at the Halloween Trunk-or-Treat celebration. I was in charge of all these super cool decorated pumpkins and got to take pictures of the kiddos as they came around in their costumes. That was one of my favorite times here.
One of the biggest things I've enjoyed most during my time in the Health Sciences program is the personal relationships that I have made with professors, peers, and even staff. On top of that, the activities that I have been involved in have helped me make these connections and meet new people. Finally, I have taken some pretty awesome classes that I've enjoyed so much!
I've had the opportunity to be part of many organizations on campus, and one of my favorite positions was being on the Peer Advisory Board and planning the 2017 Welcome Weekend for incoming first-year students. This was my proudest moment at Drake as I was able to help improve that transition for first-years and help them during that trying time. It was a long planning process and to see everything come together was such a momentous occasion.
I feel ready to tackle life after Drake not only academically but professionally. I have the knowledge from my classes to be successful, but have also been able to develop those "soft-skills" that come along with being in the healthcare profession. I have connections and great relationships with many that I know I can go to with questions or help in the future.
As cliché as it may sound, the biggest lesson I have learned from my experiences has been that it is okay to make mistakes. This is the time and place to be able to mess up and have a support system to help you learn from that and move forward. While it never feels great to mess up, it is a learning experience when you have those that are there to help lift you up.
Use your resources! There are so many people here at Drake and in the College that want to help, all you have to do is ask. It might be scary at first, but it is totally worth it.