Heaven Pough wasn’t sure about a career in nursing – until she spent time getting hands-on experience.
As a student involved in the Inspiring Minds program, Heaven joined our ministry in 2018 as a clerical assistant intern in the preoperative area at Mercy Health – St. Joseph Warren Hospital.
“During my time interning with Mercy Health, I was able to assist in clerical work such as helping with charting or making sure consent forms were uploaded to patient’s charts prior to surgery,” Heaven explains. “After experiencing this opportunity, I now plan to move to Columbus, Ohio this year to work at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in their registered nurse residency program.”
Heaven shares that Mercy Health impacted her by allowing her to see there is so much more to nursing than just hanging IVs.
“I was able to sterilize instruments and interact with patients,” she shares. “I also realized that within health care, I can do anything! On the flip side, I feel I made an impact on Mercy Health by showing inclusion and diversity within the program, proving that young people, especially those from programs such as Inspiring Minds, are able to do these jobs.”
Inspiring Minds is a national program located in Ohio in both Youngstown and Warren. For the past 16 years, it has been a point of support for kids or teens as an after-school summer program, as well as a career development program that exposes them to a variety of jobs, colleges and personal development. They help serve more than 600 kids annually across five chapters and four states, with that number continuing to grow.
“Since starting in 2018, the Inspiring Minds Summer Career Development Program, the one that Heaven was a part of, has provided more than 90 paid internships to local graduates with local companies. This includes organizations like Mercy Health,” Jessica Winters, Inspiring Minds program administrator, shares.
In addition to partnering with Mercy Health for internship opportunities, Inspiring Minds has also achieved their goal of 100 percent of their students graduating high school and continuing their education at college, in trade school or with the armed forces.
“We notice that kids in this program are really well rounded, even more so than their peers,” Jessica adds. “We see such a clear difference. Kids involved come out to experience things, meet CEOs and try new things outside of their comfort zone.”
“I feel that the biggest takeaway from being involved with the Inspiring Minds program is that there are never-ending sources of opportunity; it always has something to give,” Heaven explains. “This has either been financially, opportunities for placement of jobs and internships and also being a healthy person holistically.”
Here at Mercy Health, we are proud and honored to partner with programs like Inspiring Minds that support underrepresented youth. In working with programs like this, our ministry can continue to improve the health and well-being of the communities we serve.
Learn more about our mission at Mercy Health.