A day in the life of a student-athlete does not end once the summer begins. The “break” consists of continued strength and conditioning, sport specific workouts and some take courses to continue towards earning their degree. Some also look at getting a jump on their career with opportunities in their field of study.
Emma Colegrove just completed her sophomore season as a member of the softball team. Colegrove earned TSU’s Academic Excellence Award along with four other athletes as they each boasted the highest GPA among all student-athletes. The Healthcare Administration and Planning major holds a 4.0 grade point average.
Q: So what are you doing on your Summer Vacation?
EC: This summer, I am interning with HCA for an eight week summer work experience program.
Q: How did you come about this opportunity?
EC: I heard about the internship through the career development center at Tennessee State University. Jamal Coleman began with assisting me to perfect my resume. He then provided useful website links and helped correct my errors. Afterwards, he sent me potential internships that related to my major. Once I came across the HCA internship, he assisted me with my application and interview process. Since then, he has stayed in contact with me regarding my internship.
Q: Is there a specific area you are working with at HCA?
EC: I was assigned to work at Centennial Neuroscience to get field experience.
Q: How important is it to get field experience?
EC: Field experience is so important for my future career because when I graduate with my degree in healthcare administration and planning and a minor in business, I hope to be in the practice manager or in the hospital setting managing a group of providers and practice staff. By having field experience, I have an inside look at what their jobs are and when I start making new rules, I will be doing it with personal experience in mind.
Q: Do you get to work one-on-one with the professionals in your field at Centennial Neuro?
EC: I am working under Kellie Shae who is the practice manager. I have also had the opportunity to shadow Dr. Wilson while he practiced on patients.
Q: What kind of things did you experience while shadowing Dr. Wilson?
EC: I had the opportunity to watch him perform an EMG, which is a test where they test the patient’s nerve impulses. I also got to witness him give another patient Botox.
Q: What other positions did you get to observe?
EC: I also shadowed Dr. Wilson’s medical assistant, Wendy, to get a better understanding of how our practice begins the patient experience. I also have assisted the medical office specialist to learn how to check in and check out patients. While at the front desk, I learned more information about different laws including HIPPA that effect our office.
Q: You have seen quite a bit, but can you pinpoint a great moment to this date?
EC: One of the best opportunities is getting a mentor. My mentor is Kathi Whalen and she is the VP of ethics and compliance for all of HCA. Before coming to HCA she went to Vanderbilt for law school and worked at the white house. While at the white house, she served as Associate Counsel to President Clinton.
Q: What have you had a chance to experience with your mentor?
EC: I get to sit in on meetings with her and see how the largest medical providing system in the country handles their policies and different laws. It is nice to have a mentor outside of my area of studies to learn what other opportunities are available in the healthcare field.
Q: Have you had the chance to get some experience by working on any projects?
EC: Absolutely, I have worked on improving patient satisfaction in our office. This includes improving patient wait time and experience with the provider. Also, helping on improving the number of surveys our office receives back. Our patient demographic is hard to receive feedback from with our online survey. So my job is to try to get more patients to take the survey.
Q: What other duties have you taken on?
EC: I have written biography’s for all of the providers in our office (four) and all of the providers in Sterling Primary Care (17) which is a few floors up from us. I have also been assigned to revamping the employee handbook.
Q: How has the experience been?
EC: I am incredibly grateful for my opportunity to intern with the largest healthcare provider in the United States. This internship will give me real life experience I can bring to the workforce after graduation.
Q: Will this help in any way towards another opportunity next year?
EC: If I perform well during this eight week internship, I have an opportunity to come back and work again next summer.
Q: With basically a “full-time” internship, have you had a chance to do anything softball related?
EC: Well, I had to get some rest and do rehab after surgery at the end of the season. But I have been cleared now and I have been going with a couple teammates to hit, as well as catching a bit for LP (Lauren Powell).