Teen Summer Volunteers Recognized
McLeod Medical Center Dillon recently recognized sixteen area teens for their participation in the 2012 Teen Summer Volunteer Program. A closing ceremony was held at McLeod Dillon for the teens and their parents marking the 24th anniversary of the program.
During their two-month summer vacations, the teens volunteered to work directly with hospital health care professionals for at least 20 hours per month gaining experience in a variety of health care occupations.
Estelle Ellis, Teen Volunteer Coordinator for the past twelve years, gave some brief information on the program’s origin. “The volunteer program began in 1988 as an idea to interest high school teens in health care careers. Offering teens an opportunity for ‘hands on’ participation in a health care environment has always been the program’s objective.”
Debbie Locklair, Administrator of McLeod Dillon, opened the ceremony with prayer and thanked the teens for sharing their summer with McLeod Dillon.
She also expressed her gratitude and appreciation for the 621 hours of teen volunteer service to the hospital this summer.
“I’ve been impressed with the hard work and involvement of this volunteer group. You are to be commended for sharing your time and talents. We hope you will remember this as a rewarding experience. I hope this experience has helped each of you decide if a career in health care is right for you. There are many opportunities in health care in both patient care areas and in business services. From experience, I can say that it’s a rewarding career choice.
“McLeod Health offers many scholarships for the different health related careers available. And, when you’ve completed your education, remember that McLeod Health is always looking for bright, talented health care professionals,” said Locklair.
The evening’s special guest speaker was Brittany Watson, a 2008 Dillon Christian School graduated and former McLeod Dillon Teen Volunteer.
In May, Brittany graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science, with an emphasis in Scientific Foundations and a minor in Psychology. She will begin medical school in August at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine.
Ellis personally thanked the volunteers as they each received a certificate of appreciation.
“This has been a great opportunity for the teens to receive hands-on experience in different areas of healthcare. While they are volunteering their time, they receive so much in return. It’s also a win-win opportunity for McLeod Dillon. We not only receive the benefit of the help they provide us, but we also have a hand in positively shaping their lives.
“The teens worked in various areas of the hospital during the months of June and July, performing such tasks as transporting patients, answering phones, making patient charts, supporting outpatient department staff, assisting with marketing projects and a myriad of others. Last, but not least, they brought a lot of joy to our patients and the staff with their friendly smiles and greetings.
“This has been a great summer for all involved, we’re sad that it’s ended and look forward to next summer’s group,” said Ellis.
The list of teens honored along with the number of years each has volunteered in parentheses include: Shana Berry (3 Years), Savannah Evans (2 Years), Braylan Ford (2 Years), Brittany Ford (1 Year), Amber Graves (1 Year), Ansley Hamer (1 Year), Ja’Naijah Hamilton (1 Year), Ellie Hayes (1 Year), Daijour Huggins -Samuel (1 Year), Kristin Ingram (2 Years), Charity Jones (1 Year), Desiree’ McLain (1 Year), Cassondra Miles (1 Year), Mark Minges (1 Year), Miracle Murphy (2 Years), and Hannah Smoak (1 Year).
Ansley Hamer, having 49 volunteer hours, and Kristin Ingram, having 45.5 volunteer hours, received a certificate of special recognition for most volunteer hours.
A certificate of excellence was presented to Shana Berry for most volunteer years, having volunteered for 3 years.
At the conclusion of the ceremony, Ellis encouraged all the teens to return for next year’s Summer Teen Volunteer Program.