Last Tuesday marked my one year anniversary as the Marketing and Communications Specialist at Penn Rehab, also known as Good Shepherd Penn Partners. The organization of the therapy provider for Penn Medicine, including acute physical and occupational therapy in all of the Penn Medicine hospitals (Pennsylvania Hospital, The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center), in-patient and Long Term Acute Care on 1800 Lombard Street in Philadelphia, and outpatient services across the region (known as Penn Therapy & Fitness).
I clearly remember stumbling across the posting on a Sunday afternoon at the coffee shop. I was at the point where my life was finally coming together again and my heart was missing the work in healthcare. The food banking industry was rewarding, and Philabundance was an amazing experience, but it did not fuel me the way my work at Gift of Life Donor Program and Gift of Life Family House did. Being in physical rehabilitation was a chance to be present in capturing the heart of an aspect of healthcare without such a life or death weight, like organ donation. However to my surprise there are many pre-transplant and post transplant patients that receive physical therapy with us!
The day after emailing my information,the recruiter reached out to start the interview process. Two weeks later I was hired, and four weeks later I began my adventure. I accepted the offer in the parking lot of Ikea, and spent an hour afterwards wandering around the store in disbelief. Not only was it a generous salary increase, but came with my own door. To someone who spent the past 3 years in bullpen on top of coworkers for 8 plus hours, this was a luxury. Similar to the moment when little orphan Annie walked into Daddy Warbucks’s mansion (dramatic but you get the point).
Like most non-profits it was baptism by fire with a learning curve full of new vocabulary, coworkers, protocols and personalities. However as the weeks went on, it was clear to everyone that the work and I agreed with each other.
But it wasn’t all roses. Within 4 months of taking the job,the executive directory of the organization was replaced overnight, and my hiring manager resigned leaving me as the sole marketing person. With freaking out not being an option, I developed a wide range of marketing skills within a span of several months at a rapid speed. With the help of two other seasoned coworkers, I have been able to help build the foundation of the new era of the communication and marketing for this ever-growing organization. And fortunately I have been able to gain an incredibly talented and smart boss who has been a mentor that I never knew I needed.
With November 15 marking 4 years of starting to work full-time (yes, I know I have a thing with dates), for the first time I have been able to see a definite switch of my level of digital marketing. Just last week, I worked with my manager to launch a mini-digital campaign with objectives, tactics and goals. After I went through my outline, I looked up to see her smiling “Did you hear yourself? Your doing strategic planning.” It was a moment of pride, and a time to reflect on how grateful am for the wonderful career opportunities including my internships while studying Advertising at St. Johns University.
In a nutshell, I manage all of the digital content for the organization. Over the past year, I’ve launched a digital monthly employee newsletter, started Next Chapter, the organization’s blog, and have worked to great a library of multimedia (profiles, videos, photos) to capture the breathe of Penn Rehab- featuring patients, caregivers, employees and community partners. This has been the most writing intensive position I’ve ever held, which has spilled over in my personal penning as well.
At Penn Rehab, I’ve been able to return to capturing stories of patients, caregivers and clinicians. With over 40 interviews since I started, each experience is unique and captures the resilience of the human spirit. It has been an honor being able to be present watching someone learn how to walk again, or to go outside for the first time in months after hospitalization. And there is no greater joy than watching a former patient return to visit and being able to see how far their recovery has gone.
Here are few of my favorite pieces that I’ve covered over the past year:
- A Family Affair
- On the Other End of Caregiving
- Getting Back After an Unexpected Fall
- Life Interrupted
- The Road to Recovery to Enjoy Retirement
- Succeeding After Stroke
- A Return to Normalcy
- The Balancing Act of Recovery
- Bringing Bonnie Home
In the upcoming months there are even more exciting things to share about the work I am doing for this organization, and it will be wonderful to share it on here. Truly, I cannot wait to see what my next year will bring at Penn Rehab!
If you’re interested, here are a few links from the digital platforms I manage.
- Penn Rehab Facebook
- Penn Rehab LinkedIn
- Penn Rehab Twitter
- Penn Rehab Instagram
- Next Chapter: Penn Rehab Blog