Beyond the Classroom Learning on the Job at Adventist Health

September 01, 2003 | Heather Wheeler

At Adventist Health, we believe that learning goes beyond the classroom. In fact, we’re convinced that on-the-job training is an essential part of the education process. Toward that end, the Roseville, Calif.-based organization—with 20 hospitals throughout California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington—offers internships to college students who want to put classroom theories to practice and gain real-world experience.

Hannah (Raymer) Clegg has always worked hard to achieve her goals. After graduating from Southwestern Adventist University, Clegg wanted to pursue an opportunity that would showcase her talents. A self-taught graphic designer, she graduated with a bachelor's degree in corporate communication and started a two-year internship at Adventist Medical Center (AMC)—a position she was offered prior to receiving her degree. An Oregon native, Clegg was happy to venture back home where she spends her days writing and designing marketing collateral for the Portland-based hospital.

According to Monty Knittel, AMC vice president for marketing and business development, Clegg is the kind of young professional Adventist Health seeks. “Hannah is eager to learn and willing to tackle any task we give her,” said Knittel. “She came to us with so many invaluable skills, and she’s already a wonderful asset to our department and this hospital.”

Ever since he can remember, Cory Ferrier has known about Adventist Health. Growing up in the Northwest, his mother worked at AMC, and when Ferrier was in academy he worked at one of AMC’s clinics. As a college student, he was excited to learn that the organization offered a variety of summer internships.

“Initially, I was interested in a finance internship, but when I was offered one in human resources, I decided to give it a try,” recalled Ferrier. It was a choice that would change the course of his career.

After completing his junior year at Walla Walla College, Ferrier headed to Simi Valley Hospital in southern California for what he thought would be just another summer job.

“Soon after I began the internship, my supervisor started giving me projects that really exposed me to a lot of HR areas,” stated Ferrier. “It not only made me realize how exciting the career was but also how vital HR is to a hospital.”

Ferrier wasn’t the only one who recognized his new-found passion. His supervisor, Barbara Reynolds, knew she had found someone special. In fact, Reynolds was so impressed that she offered Ferrier a job. He now serves as a full-time human resources assistant at the hospital and is completing his college degree at a local university.

Ferrier feels blessed that he was offered a job with Adventist Health. “Being a part of an organization that is big enough to offer me career growth but also has a strong mission and supports my religious background is great.”