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Rogers celebrates the contributions of interns on National Intern Day

07/14/23 02:45:pm

Since 2017, National Intern Day has been observed on the last Thursday in July, recognizing the accomplishments of interns and encouraging opportunities for professional development.

This year Rogers has more than 150 interns, mostly working with therapists and as residents or fellows.

Nashville intern finds value in experience

Intern Grace.jpgGrace Garron is a graduate student at Belmont University in Nashville, where she’s working toward her master’s degrees in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Counseling. She started interning at Rogers in Nashville in May 2023 and will continue through May 2024. Currently, Grace is working with children and adolescents two days a week in the OCD and Anxiety outpatient program.

“During my interview with Rogers, I was immediately impressed with the program,” says Grace. “I believed it would provide me with a well-rounded practicum experience. I felt that fostering my clinician skills in an environment that focuses on a variety of prevalent mental illnesses would positively impact my ability to diagnose and treat patients.”

Grace says a classmate completed her practicum at Rogers and highly recommended the internship. She’s grateful she pursued the opportunity.

“Dr. Michaels has been such an incredible mentor,” she says. “Rogers’ CBT Academy equipped me with a better understanding of OCD, PTSD, eating disorders, depression, and anxiety. Being surrounded by such positive, hardworking, and intelligent team members has made me feel so motivated and supported. I continue to fill my ‘therapeutic toolbox’ with interventions, skills, and techniques that I will carry with me throughout the rest of my career.”

Patrick Michaels, PhD, Nashville clinical director, is inspired by interns.

“They bring fresh ideas,” says Dr. Michaels. “I have about two students a year and they help me think about things in different ways. They’re in school learning and reading some of the most current literature, and I always learn something from them.”

Dr. Michaels says his team also benefits from the experience.

“Once they’re up and running, interns can lead groups, walk around in the milieu, and interact with patients,” he says. “It’s also a major positive from a compassion resilience perspective because students are willing, interested, and curious, so my team has the opportunity to work on their mentorship skills, teaching the interns what they know.”

Dr. Michaels says working with interns is a great way to give back to the mental health field.

“I was once in that position needing to be trained,” he says. “This level of care helps up-and-coming clinicians to know what level of impairment this comprises, so if they open their own clinic, they know when to refer. By teaching them to provide treatment in the way that we do, we know they’re going to do good work out in the world.”

Brown Deer intern gains skills to support her nursing career

Emilie_new.JPGEmilie Petersen attends Milwaukee School of Engineering and learned about the internship opportunity through a nursing career fair held on campus. She’s enjoying working as a mental health technician in Brown Deer under the supervision of nurse, Shannon Basile.

“I’ve felt supported by my teammates,” says Emilie. “As a soon-to-be graduate in nursing, I wanted to gain some experience in a learning environment. I’ve been involved in the patient admission process, gathering educational information on various nursing topics, and charting admission and group notes.”

Emilie says her experience at Rogers helped her solidify her career choice.

“Shannon’s teaching and work ethic show how dedicated she is,” she says. “Having her as my preceptor and working with nurse, Amanda Espenscheid, has motivated me to pursue the mental health field in the future. Both of them have been supportive and are always willing to educate me.”

Shannon enjoys working with students.

“I’ve typically had one student per semester,” says Shannon. “Not only do you teach things to your preceptee, but I also learn from them as well. They’re extremely helpful to have on busy days to lend an extra set of hands. While the first few days may seem busy while completing your own tasks, I just remind myself that having a preceptee can be very rewarding. Few nurses choose the world of psychiatric nursing, so when a student does, it’s very exciting! It’s great to give back.”

Shannon is grateful for the huge impact Emilie has had on the team.

“Emilie is extremely helpful and thorough, and she takes initiative,” she says. “She’s even been complimented on some of the notes she’s charted by other members of the treatment team. Emilie reminds me a lot of myself when I was a new nurse and has been a great self-reflection of my own nursing journey.”

Working with interns reminds Shannon of her “why.”

“It helps reignite my passion of why I went into psychiatric nursing, and it makes me feel proud to have new nurses who are just as passionate,” she says.

Oconomowoc intern hopes to return to Rogers

Dan_new.JPGDan Sidesky interned at the Silver Lake Outpatient Center in Oconomowoc from April to June 2023. He completed his clinical rotations in order to graduate with his degree as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner.

Dan says prior to his internship he had many interactions with Rogers teammates while working at Milwaukee County Mental Health Complex.

“I frequently gave and received nurse-to-nurse handoffs during patient transfers,” says Daniel. “The amount of professionalism, respect, altruism, and advocacy that Rogers nurses had for me and the patient was second to none. I also sat with patients who shared their previous experiences with Rogers, and they shared the same sentiment.”

Dan says he feels like he won the lottery working with Cassandra Kneifl, DNP, PMHNP-BC, and the Silver Lake team.

“She saw how passionate and intellectually curious I was about the work we were doing,” he says. “She always took time to stay later and debrief with me, teach me about additional pointers with my practice, and give me extra encouragement with the job I was doing. The collaboration with the therapy team was excellent. Every day we would discuss progress, brainstorm new approaches, and we all participated in the decision-making process in order to provide the highest level of care to our patients.”

Dr. Kneifl says she enjoys learning from her students.

“They help me stay up to date on any recent mental health advancements,” says Dr. Kneifl. “We’re all students at one point, so why not help them succeed just as I’ve been able to? Dan showed so much initiative and helped our patients make changes in their lives that I usually wouldn’t expect to see from a student. I don’t think I could have asked for anyone more dedicated.”

Dan says he hopes to one day be part of Team Rogers again.

“I can’t say enough about how incredible an experience it was,” he says. “I’ll always remember a patient telling me, ‘We can tell when doctors just want their information so they can move on to the next patient and which ones really care. It’s taking those ten extra minutes and speaking to us during times of uncertainty that really helps us progress.’ This standard was carried out by the entire team.”

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