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Northern Light Health: The Next Generation

Fabri-3-(3).jpgWhen you think about interns and healthcare, most people think about clinical interns or maybe reruns of the television show, Scrubs. However, alongside clinicians and caregivers, healthcare involves a full range of job roles including building and maintaining complex information systems made up of software and hardware essential to treating our patients.

Information systems (IS) internships for students are few and far between in Maine. Often, students are forced to travel great distances to get the experience they need—a hardship for students who attend classes, work, and have families to support. In response to requests from colleges, universities, and individuals, Northern Light Health’s IS department has re-energized its IS Intern Program. Northern Light Health has established relationships with nine schools throughout Maine and even beyond with schools as far away as Maryland. We work directly with career counselors to provide a tailored experience for each applicant.

Northern Light Health is certainly dedicated to this cause as a service to our community, but the experience is mutually beneficial. Not only are our interns learning from their field work, but we benefit from their advanced skills in the latest industry best practices.
 
“The application was probably the only thing that was like what I was expecting,” said Charles Fabri, a former intern who now works as an associate specialist in IS Infrastructure Operations. “The interview was relaxed and that probably helped me in the long run. It helped me get a better idea of what to expect when I came to the IS Service Desk.” Charles added that once he began working and learned what his job entailed, “… the team did a great job of making me feel wanted and a part of the team. Everyone was super helpful and great to work with.”

Internships give us an opportunity to get to know individuals well, so as positions become available, these interns turned candidates can hit the ground running. “Particularly for the service desk, a quick onboarding is important,” said Jeanne Paradis, manager of IS Customer Support Services and IS Infrastructure Operations, who both manages and mentors the IS interns. “There are more than 400 protocols and so many applications in use at this organization. These internships are an opportunity for students to ramp up with that experience. So far, we have hired two of the interns and they are working out beautifully. I can’t think of an intern that we have had that I wouldn’t have hired if they were interested. One of them was in her sophomore year, so it was a little too early!”

Charles is not only gaining a wealth of experience, he’s also getting a preview of Northern Light Health’s culture. “The people here are amazing to work with and are fun to be around. This is one of the few places I’ve worked where it really does feel like we’re one big family around each other. During my internship I got to see many different sides to the IS team and the different departments, and it helped me see that there are things here that really interest me and are what I want to do once I graduate, even when I look past my wanting to help others the best I can. I see things here that I won’t be able to see and learn anywhere else.”

While non-clinical internships are limited to IS at this time, there is an interest in further developing other business internships, particularly in Accounting to ensure a strong and well-rounded workforce in our future.

If you know someone who is interested in an internship opportunity at Northern Light Health, please have them reach out by using the Northern Light Heath Careers page at: https://northernlighthealth.org/careers/.