CUIMC Bids Adieu to Summer Youth Employment Participants

August 20, 2019
Some student participants in the 2019 CUIMC Summer Youth Employment Program pose for a group shot.
Some student participants in the 2019 CUIMC Summer Youth Employment Program (Credit: Christian Balmer)

Nearly 90 area students participated in the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) hosted by Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC). The participants, who gained valuable work experience and exposure to an academic medicine environment by working in nearly 70 departments throughout the medical center, were feted in a goodbye lunch on Aug. 13 at the Russ Berrie Medical Science Pavilion.

The students, ages 16 to 21, were placed in administrative positions and compensated by the city of New York. CUIMC Today caught up with two of the students and asked them about their experiences at CUIMC. Here are their responses, in their own words. (Responses have been lightly edited for clarity.)

Faith Freeman, a student in the 2019 CUIMC Summer Youth Employment Program, is shown.
Faith Freeman, a student in the 2019 CUIMC Summer Youth Employment Program (Credit: Christian Balmer)

Faith Freeman

In what CUIMC department were you placed? I worked at the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons (VP&S) as an assistant in the office of Dr. Lee Goldman, the Dean of the Faculties of Health Sciences and Medicine and Chief Executive of the medical center. 

What do you think of your summer here? It was great! I learned about some resources I could use in my college academic career. Also, my coworkers were fantastic. They made me feel welcomed, comfortable, and encouraged. 

Do you have anything to add about your experience here? It was wonderful that CUIMC has programs that high school and college students can take advantage of by providing jobs in the fields of our interests. CUIMC also made sure we could further those interests by providing more resources—and most of them were free! It’s great that Columbia provides awesome opportunities for students. 

 

Vianca Martinez, a participant in the 2019 CUIMC Summer Youth Employment Program, is shown.
Vianca Martinez, a participant in the 2019 CUIMC Summer Youth Employment Program (Credit: Christian Balmer)

Vianca Martinez

In what CUIMC department were you placed? I worked in the Office of Government and Community Affairs, where I did research on community programs at medical schools around the country. I also did research on community programs and initiatives within CUIMC.

What did you think of your summer here? It was exciting to be in a setting that works so closely with a hospital, which is important to me since I am interested in pursuing a career in nursing. I enjoyed working here and I appreciate the experience I have gained.

What was the best part for you? The best part was being able to learn a lot more about what universities offer through the research projects I was given. This was very helpful to me as I am applying to colleges this fall. I also learned about the different services the College of Dental Medicine has to offer and about the Simulation Center at the School of Nursing.