I never really had a true passion for what I wanted to be or do after high school until I got my first job at a retirement home. I started working at The Highlands in January of 2019, and I have been working there ever since. As a sixteen-year-old, I always knew I wanted to work at a job that would allow me to help others and make a difference in people’s lives. I wrote out a list of possible jobs I could see myself doing, and out of everything on my list, The Highlands stood out to me the most because of my passion for helping others. I knew that working at a retirement home would give me the opportunity to make a difference, and would provide me with experiences that would prepare me for my future career. Not only has working at The Highlands provided an outlet for me to support others, it has also helped me to discover my interest in occupational therapy.
Working at The Highlands has given me so many opportunities such as meeting some of my best friends, helping others, working in a friendly environment, and gaining experience working with the elderly. As a server, I have many responsibilities which include communicating effectively with the residents, providing a friendly attitude, and supporting them in any way that I can. I remember prior to working at The Highlands my communication skills were not nearly as strong as they are now. It was difficult for me to communicate effectively because of how shy I was. Working here has really helped me overcome my timidity and also helped me gain confidence in myself and my abilities.
Working at a retirement home has taught me to communicate well and to also help accommodate others. While I’m working, I often notice some of the residents struggling to eat, or even do simple tasks such as holding a spoon or walking. Watching these situations made me feel heartbroken and has led me to want to take action. Yes, I can help them hold their utensils properly, and I can offer them support when they are struggling to walk, but I wish I could do more to help. I want to make an impact on people and help improve their daily lives in any way possible.
My desire to help others became evident through my time at The Highlands and has led me to want to pursue a career in occupational therapy. To further support this goal, I set up an internship with the Governor Mifflin High School occupational therapist. During this internship, I get the opportunity to work with kids with disabilities. Some of my duties include helping students learn how to tie shoes, assisting students with their handwriting skills, and supporting students with their career goals.
Becoming an occupational therapist will fulfill all of the different aspects I want in a career. I will be able to assist others and help them overcome their daily struggles which may include handwriting skills, mental health, and behavioral issues. I believe this career field will be the perfect fit for me because I will be able to help patients improve and regain their skills needed for everyday life. My ultimate goal in life is to be able to help improve the lives of others in any way I can. I know that through this career I will be able to achieve everything I could ever dream of and more, with all of the extensive options and possibilities this career holds.