Student Interns: a Day in the Life

SUNY Oswego students participate in a variety of internship programs to gain experience within their intended career fields as well as earn credits towards their degree progression. With the wide range of B.A. programs offered at our university, it is interesting to analyze the internships that students gravitate towards and to develop new perspectives on the knowledge that they are able to attain through these experiences. 

Senior Jenny Carr will be receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree in human development this May 2020. She is currently an occupational therapy intern at Fyzical Therapy & Balance Center in Oswego, New York. Jenny decided to take us along with her on a typical day of interning to share some valuable information about her ventures working alongside local occupational therapists.

Carr typically arrives at her workplace at 10 a.m. with a hot coffee in hand. She walks in the double door entrance of the facility and is greeted by a therapy dog named Lincoln which she describes as “the perfect way to start a productive work day”. She reports to her designated area of the gym floor space where she assists occupational therapists caring for patients suffering from physical disabilities. These individuals struggle to complete basic tasks in their daily lives such as using the restroom, opening doors and getting dressed. “Some of my main tasks include assisting patients back to the therapists and setting them up by making them feel comfortable and preparing a hot pack for them until their therapist is ready to start treatment”. 

Since beginning her internship at Fyzical Therapy & Balance Center, Jenny has felt more connected than ever to her career goals of becoming a certified occupational therapist. Witnessing the powerful results of occupational therapy is both inspiring and demonstrates just how beneficial this field of work is. This experience has provided both valuable practice and a positive introduction to this type of professional setting. She is more motivated than ever to continue her education and work towards receiving her Master of Science degree in Occupational Therapy. “As an intern, It’s important to remember that everyone has to start somewhere and that nothing worthwhile comes easy!”

A Different Kind of Valentine

Valentine’s Day is a holiday dedicated to celebrating love and all things sweet. February 14th is a perfect day to reflect on our special relationships and all of the ways that we spread love to those around us. 

The concept of love however, is not contained to one particular notion. Some of the purest forms of love entail acts that challenge popular traditions often associated with today. While a card, box of chocolates, or bouquet of flowers speak volumes, it is interesting to explore other unique and meaningful ways to share the love this Valentine’s Day. Many SUNY Oswego students take the initiative to spread love and positivity all year long, and their altruistic efforts launch a continuous reaction of kindness within our community. 

One program that inspires our students to give back through generous acts of volunteer work is Adopt a Grandparent. This organization supplies transportation to student volunteers, bringing them to local nursing homes where they spend time with their residents and help organize a variety of activities intended to help them relax, have fun, and form special connections with one another. 

Bradley Stoyell, a sophomore at SUNY Oswego, kindly took the time to answer a few questions about his experience as a group leader for the Adopt a Grandparent Program. His reflection on the many meaningful opportunities he has gained through this position can give us all an important reminder of the abundance of different types of love we can display in this world. 

Bradley explained the work that Adopt a Grandparent does with Saint Luke’s nursing home and emphasized the significance of the special bonds created between their residents and the student volunteers. He shared how positive their group experiences are while working with a kind staff who cares deeply for their residents and how rewarding building these relations can be.

When asked about his most memorable experience spreading love in the Oswego community, Stoyell shared a story about the time he and a friend noticed a flustered elderly woman at a local gas station who could not find her way home. He explained that through his experience with Adopt a Grandparent, he’s worked with a variety of residents suffering from dementia or other cognitive loss which allowed him to recognize similar symptoms in this woman. By staying calm, he was able to retrieve her address and get her home safely. Bradley shared, “this was a huge way of spreading love in the community because I was able to see how loved she felt at that moment.”

Valentine’s Day can have many different meanings, but taking the time to recognize our students who continuously spread love and care within our community feels extra meaningful. The selfless work that is completed by student volunteers like Bradely Stoyell allows for a happier, safer, and more loving environment and that, is a beautiful thing. While February 14th only comes once a year, let’s follow in Bradely’s footsteps and dedicate more time to sharing smiles year round and giving a new meaning to the word love.