Mt. Nittany Health honors teen volunteers

STATE COLLEGE — Mount Nittany Health hosted its annual Volunteer Recognition Luncheon recently, honoring the 621 individuals who provide more than 60,000 hours of service, in a number of patient-related and ancillary capacities, across the system each year.

“Families come to us in times of joy, sorrow and the unknown,” said Meredith Thompson, director, volunteer resources, Mount Nittany Health. “They quickly learn that the mere sight of a blue smock is one of comfort, compassion and understanding. Week after week, our volunteers come in, providing selfless dedication, not knowing what the shift may bring. I know I speak for many when I say, thank you.”

In addition to honoring all volunteers, a special aspect of this event is the announcement of teen volunteer scholarship recipients. To receive this prestigious award, students must be graduating in 2017 from a local high school, must have completed a minimum of 200 hours of distinguished volunteer service with Mount Nittany Health, and must be pursuing a career in healthcare from an accredited institution.

This year’s winners are Crystal Dahm and Katherine Kim.

Crystal Dahm has been volunteering since June 2014, logging 210 hours to date. Currently a patient floor and Nittany Grill volunteer, Dahm said she became a volunteer with Mount Nittany Health to gain exposure to a hospital environment. She wanted to observe what a career in medicine might look like, nd learned that she not only enjoys the environment, but also helping those in need. She plans to attend Boston College in Chestnut Hill, Mass.

Logging 329 hours to date, Katherine Kim has been volunteering in the Nittany Grill and patient floors since January 2013. Kim said she first realized medicine was for her when she began spending time with patients. Kim’s most memorable experience was a patient thanking her for making her day better. She said it is one she will never forget. She is mature, trustworthy, and according to her math teacher, the complete package for a career in the health profession. Kim plans to attend Carnegie Mellon University.

Mount Nittany Health commended these young students and all volunteers for their dedication and service to help make the people of our region healthier.