GMercyU Students Complete Internship with Independence Blue Cross Foundation

Gwynedd Mercy University Nursing students Edith Trinidad-Medina and Taylor Young participated in the Independence Blue Cross Foundation's annual nursing internship program this summer.

The students first discovered the opportunity when GMercyU's Career Development Center shared information on internships with Independence Blue Cross (IBX) this past spring.

Each summer, participants in IBX's internship program spend 10 weeks working at Independence Blue Cross or at a community health center supported by the Foundation's Blue Safety Net grant program.

After going through the application process, both students were offered internships. Taylor worked at the Children's Health Center of VNA Community Services while Edith worked at Mary Howard Health Center.

Their responsibilities varied, from screening for COVID-19 and handling administrative work to giving immunizations with nurse supervision and conducting patient outreach.

Through real-world experiences like these, students are able to not only put the skills they've learned in class into action, but see if the career path they chose is the right fit. For Taylor and Edith, it confirmed what they always knew.

"I was able to use a lot of fundamental nursing skills that I acquired at GMercyU such as vital signs, injections, assessing patients, and more," Edith said. "This internship has made me realize that I have chosen the right career. Being at Mary Howard Health Center gave me a feeling of fulfillment and joy every day that I was there."

While the hands-on experience is invaluable for their future nursing careers, the relationships they developed with their patients will leave a lasting impact.

"I had the opportunity to provide care for a population who was not always able to receive everything they needed to comfortably survive. At times, this made me feel helpless," Taylor said. "Other times, I found peace in the fact that I was able to provide these individuals with care and direct them to services that would help make daily living easier for them once they left the office."

GMercyU has a long history of preparing excellent nurses who not only have outstanding clinical skills, but are known for providing compassionate care that focuses on the whole patient.

"Clinical nursing skills are crucial to provide care. But developing communication skills is what makes a good nurse a great nurse," Taylor said. "This can only be achieved through experience which is why I am so grateful for my opportunity."