CHHS News

Summer Internship Increases HAP Student’s Understanding of Health Care

Shannon Mehaffey

Shannon Mehaffey

Internships are a key element of a college education, and, in many cases, help students explore various career fields and expand their understanding of their degree field.

For Shannon Mehaffey, her summer internship is no exception.

Mehaffey, a junior in the BS in health administration program with a concentration in assisted living/senior housing administration, combined her interest in caring for memory impaired senior adults with some guidance from her academic advisor on how to network to obtain a tailored internship this summer. She is currently an administrator in training intern at Hubbard Hill Retirement Community in Elkhart, Indiana.

“In my experiences with older adults who had memory impairments, I had a growing desire to spend time with them and care for them,” Mehaffey said. “Hubbard Hill is in the process of expanding to create a new memory care program. I participate in almost all of the meetings for this project – with the architects, construction team, finance and budget committee, and the memory care program team. It really is an incredible opportunity and such a privilege to be a part of the building of this memory care addition from the ground up.”

Mehaffey already knows that her summer internship has shaped her future career decisions, and she attributes being able to take advantage of an internship experience to Mason.

“The personal testimonies of my professors and their work in health care have moved me to respond to the call to action, as well as my advisor’s encouragement to say yes to opportunities that come up such as this internship,” Mehaffey said. “This summer has definitely impacted my understanding of the health care field. I still have a lot to learn and experience, but this internship has really shown me what type of organization I want to work for, the type of people I want to work with, and the type of advocate I want to be for this population.”