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Summer volunteers gain valuable first-hand experience

Monday, August 12, 2013

Must commit to a minimum of 100 hours during the summer

Keely Cunningham, left, and Naomi Frey, center and Doris Wilson, right
Summer volunteers Keely Cunningham, left, and Naomi Frey, center, talk to volunteer Doris Wilson, right, about a task that needs to be performed in the Short Stay Unit at WellSpan York Hospital.

Mimi Knaub of York beamed when Caesar Vulley entered her room at WellSpan York Hospital to help her take a walk down the hallway.

“Caesar has been a tremendous help,” she said. “He’s very attentive and kind. I enjoy his company and all he does for me.”

Vulley, a junior at Bucknell University who is considering a career as a physician, is one of 45 summer volunteers at WellSpan York Hospital and WellSpan Gettysburg Hospital.

“It’s been a wonderful experience,” said Vulley, discussing his summer volunteer experience.

“I learn something new every day, and I really enjoy having close contact with patients. They are very grateful for everything I do.”

Summer volunteers range in age from 14 to college students. They must commit to a minimum of 100 hours of service during the summer. Most volunteer at least three days a week.

“We have an outstanding group of summer volunteers,” said Christi Brown, director, volunteer services. “They are very committed, and most of them are interested in health care-related professions.”

Brown said some summer volunteers are helping to pilot patient experience positions such as a housekeeping advocate, greeters at the front entrances, patient escorts and menu assistant.

They also serve in traditional positions such as patient aides and clerical assistants.

Keely Cunningham, a junior at Dallastown High School, and Naomi Frey, a sophomore at Central York High School, volunteer in the Short Stay Unit at WellSpan York Hospital on Mondays.

Cunningham is considering a career as a psychiatrist while Frey is interested in becoming an obstetrician. Both agree that the first-hand experience has been invaluable.

“We’ve learned a lot just by observing the nurses,” said Cunningham. “There haven’t been any real surprises. Maybe the biggest surprise has been how nice all the staff members have been to us.”

Frey added, “It’s very organized in the Short Stay Unit. The hospital isn’t as chaotic as it seems on television programs.”

The summer volunteers try to do whatever they can to help staff members and patients. Sometimes it means making the litters, stocking supplies or folding patient gowns.

“Summer volunteers are a tremendous asset to our staff members and patients,” said Brown. “They have been well received.”

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About the provider search

This search will provide you with WellSpan Medical Group and Northern Lancaster County (Ephrata) Medical Group primary care physicians and specialists. If we don’t have a WellSpan Medical Group physician to meet your criteria, the search will expand to include community physicians who partner with WellSpan Medical Group physicians through the WellSpan Provider Network or provide care to patients on the Medical Staffs of WellSpan’s Hospitals.