Meagan Clark, right, a summer volunteer at WellSpan Gettysburg Hospital, delivers a specimen to lab technician Allison Watts, left.
Students value experience
Ravi Patel is one of approximately 70 high school and college students volunteering this summer at WellSpan hospitals.
Patel, who’s volunteering at WellSpan Ephrata Community Hospital, is a junior at Penn State University. He’s majoring in biology and hopes to attend medical school.
“I’m volunteering because I want to gain first-hand experience of what goes on in a hospital setting. It will be very beneficial to my future.”
Patel said clinical experience is an important factor when applying to medical schools, which are very competitive.
“I am appreciative of the opportunity WellSpan Ephrata Community Hospital has given me,” he said. “I have enjoyed every minute of my volunteering experience.”
Summer volunteers must be at least 14 years old and have completed the eighth grade. They must go through a selective process and commit to serving 100 hours, which averages to about 12 hours a week.
Christi Brown, director of volunteer services, said the summer program, which runs from June 2 through Aug. 15, has attracted teens who are talented, committed and community-minded.
“We have an outstanding group of summer volunteers,” she said. “They perform a variety of duties and have been a tremendous asset to the staff.”
Meagan Clark, a sophomore at Fairfield Area High School, returned for her second summer volunteering at WellSpan Gettysburg Hospital. She covers the front lobby desk and helps in other areas throughout the hospital when needed.
“Volunteering gives me something to do with my summer and the opportunity to help people.”
Jax Kelly, a sophomore at Dallastown High School, returned for his second year of volunteering at WellSpan York Hospital.
“Volunteering has given me great insight into the medical field,” he said. “I’ve seen how the care team comes together. Volunteering has been a great experience.”
Jacob Swartz, a junior at Central High School, is interested in a career in the hospitality industry. He believes volunteering at a hospital will be helpful.
“Patient satisfaction is a top priority at WellSpan York Hospital,” he said. “It’s interesting to see all the things staff members do to help ensure patient satisfaction. I’m getting an opportunity to learn what it’s like when you work on the front line.”