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From the Cancer Institute to a Tertiary Hospital: My Internship Experience

Northwell Health

From the Cancer Institute to a tertiary hospital – my internship experience

Written by: Alexa Bernardini, 2016 & 2017 HMP Intern

If it had not been for the Office of Undergraduate Biology at my university, I would have never been exposed to the opportunity to apply for Northwell Health’s Healthcare Management Program (HMP). After visiting the office to discuss career opportunities that would combine my passions for the biological sciences and business, a student advisor raved about her experience working for Northwell Health and mentioned I should look into the HMP program. As a sophomore, it was rare to find an internship opportunity that delved into the world of healthcare administration and enabled me to work with so many different departments throughout the health system.

I started my Northwell Health journey at Monter Cancer Center, where I was able to gather resources to build an internal website for Cancer Institute members across all sites. By leading this project, I interacted with many departments such as finance and operations, cancer research, and academic affairs among many others. One of my favorite parts about this project was being able to meet leaders throughout the facility who graciously welcomed me to the team and were happy to answer all of my questions to further my learning and engagement. Our goal was to develop the Cancer Institute as a unified and prominent entity for cancer treatment, research, and education. The first step to achieving this goal was having a place for all Cancer Institute employees to access to information regarding clinical trials, Continuing Medical Education events, cancer conferences, and community outreach initiatives. When my internship ended, I still followed up regarding the progress of my project, and loved knowing that I added value throughout my time at Monter Cancer Center.

Upon reaching my junior year of college, I was able to apply what I had learned at Northwell Health to my courses and campus organizations. As I reflected on what I had learned during my internship, I knew I wanted to return to Northwell Health the next summer at a different site to absorb even more information from a different perspective. Fortunately, I was given the opportunity to once again join the HMP program, where I am currently spending my summer in the hospital operations department of Long Island Jewish Medical Center. I have learned that I enjoy working in both atmospheres, LIJ as a large tertiary hospital and Monter Cancer Center as a smaller, outpatient cancer treatment facility. Something I love about the HMP program is that there are so many different sites throughout the health system that participate in the program, and I can hear about other interns’ experiences who are placed at different locations. While at LIJ Medical Center, our team has been collaborating with the team at North Shore University Hospital to work on a hypothetical business case regarding the Pre-Surgical Testing (PST) care model. Our goal was to design an off-site location that combined two of the region’s existing centers. This theoretical project has been a great learning experience to identify what goals a project of this size would want to accomplish, such as the desire to maximize operational efficiencies, standardize procedures, and ultimately create a more positive patient experience. We took the time to plan, shadow their processes on-site, and combine the best practices of both PST locations to create a care model that features an ideal blueprint of the new space, taking into account estimated patient volume and length of stay.

After spending two consecutive summers as part of the Northwell team, I have learned that working in healthcare administration across sites has the common theme of integrating departments and unifying their workflow processes and workplace culture.

Update: Alexa has been offered and accepted a full-time position once she graduates from Cornell University in May.

Submit your resume to become a Summer Associate in the 2018 Healthcare Management Program Internship.

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Experiencing health care through the Healthcare Management Program Internship

Northwell Health

Experiencing health care through the Healthcare Management Program Internship

Written by: Ketrah Mugambe

When I first started my summer internship at Northwell Health in the Healthcare Management Program, I thought I had a sound idea of what I wanted to do in my career. Being a science major, it made perfect sense to want to pursue healthcare from a clinical standpoint. I had no idea of what an administrative job in health care could offer. I figured – why not go against the grain a bit? Why not see what else is out there?

So I spent eight weeks with a little yellow notepad and a ballpoint pen, trying to absorb every aspect of health care management I would encounter. From finance to operations to data analytics, my learning curve was intense. My projects were new and overwhelming. And unfortunately for me, my pure science course load in undergrad proved to be absolutely zero help.

Every day in the office was different, and the variety of projects that I had was a true testament to that. To name only a couple, I was tasked to give suggestions of improvements to an oncology lab based on my observations, as well as to create an internal employee survey measuring employee satisfaction and engagement. I was working with real-time data, and important information that was of great use to my preceptors. It was a bit intimidating, determining the best way to utilize it all.

What motivated me, though, was the trust my preceptors had in me to get the job done, despite me being an intern with so much to learn. Throughout each of my projects, I was expected to know exactly what was expected of me, but to also know what my limits were and when to ask for help. I was called on to report back the results I found, making me feel like an integral part of the discussions that took place in that second-floor conference room. And most importantly, I was held accountable for ensuring that my output was my absolute best effort. Each day brought a different challenge, but I had the guidance and the support I needed to meet each one.

So while I came into my internship not really knowing what to expect, I can happily say that this summer turned out to be an incredibly rewarding experience for me. I not only learned a lot about Northwell, and their commitment to their patients and employees, but I also learned a lot about myself, and about what my capabilities are. This summer I had the great opportunity to be a part of a team, a team that needed me just as much as I needed them.

For those of you wondering where I stand in terms of my career plans now, the administrative side of healthcare has definitely caught my eye. The hustle and bustle that occurs behind the scenes, and not on a care facility’s main floors is an experience like no other. But overall, I have come to learn that there is definitely a career for me in healthcare, regardless of what path I will ultimately decide to take.

Submit your resume to become a Summer Associate in the 2018 Healthcare Management Program Internship.

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My journey in the Healthcare Management Program Internship

Northwell Health

My journey in the Healthcare Management Program Internship

Written by: Jimmy Yoder, 2017 HMP Intern

I got the call I would be working in the Big Apple this summer in the middle of my finance class. Filled with excitement, I was practically squirming the rest of class. Needless to say, I didn’t do too well on the quiz that day. Four months later, I was on the way to my dream city for the summer to work at Northwell Health in the Cardiothoracic Surgery and Cardiology Service Line.

I’ve always had this obsession with living in a big city. Maybe it’s because I grew up in a boring suburb or maybe I just love breathing sub-par air. Regardless, I was made for New York. Northwell Health was the perfect internship for me. However, Healthcare Administration hasn’t always been my path. The majority of college was spent preparing for medical school. This let me dip my toes in the water and see if this is the right choice for me.

Day 1 at North Shore University Hospital rolls around and it was a whirlwind. For starters, my boss LOVES the stairs and my body does not love the stairs. The campus was and still is, so incredible. Almost a tiny city filled with thousands of employees and patients surrounded by world-class healthcare. From the get-go we had assignments. Whether it was data analytics, operations or marketing, we were pushed out of our comfort zone. I literally spent a week staring at excel trying to figure out that beast. The panic of not knowing a single thing about what I was doing began to hit. I sat down with one of the Management Associate Program associates and she told me you’re not growing if you’re comfortable. So I kept on trucking and utilized all the people around me. We were given work that actually means something and can benefit the service line, which not a lot of interns at other companies can say.

My Northwell Health experience has been one for the books. Aside from learning perhaps more information than I have in the classroom, the other interns have pushed the experience from great to incredible. A group of us, the out of state “commuters”, have gotten so close. From after work dinner, Broadway shows, happy hour and so much more, we became closer than ever. I think that is going to be the hardest part, going back to our respective universities and not seeing each other for an absurd amount of time. You know us millennials though; we will stay in touch through one of our 20 social media platforms. Lastly, I am so thankful I had such supportive preceptors pushing me to grow and challenging me, but most importantly helping me learn.

Whether my journey with Northwell Health continues or I end up someplace else, I’ll look back and know I was Made for this.

Update: Jimmy has been offered and accepted a full-time position at Northwell Health after he graduates from the University of Texas in May.

Submit your resume to become a Summer Associate in the 2018 Healthcare Management Program Internship.

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Healthcare Management Program Interns Take On NYC


Healthcare Management Program Interns Take On NYC

At Northwell Health it’s not a normal 9-5, so that’s why we gave our 26 Healthcare Management Program (HMP) interns an opportunity to take a break from their day-to-day work and projects, and experience New York City through an educational experience with a team building and critical thinking twist.

NYC-city-hall-HMPFirst, they started at City Hall with a tour exploring New York City’s culture since over 50% of our HMP interns live outside New York State. What better way to experience that than starting from the beginning with George Washington?

After the tour, they sat down with Deborah Brown, Chief Health Strategy and Innovation Officer for the NYC Office of the Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services to talk about the ever-changing landscape of health care and how the government is helping to cultivate plans for value-based care and population health, insurance reimbursement and more. Ms. Brown also shared her career journey in law that led to her current role in the governor’s office and opened the floor for a Q&A session with the interns.

With a quick trip on the subway, our interns went to Lenox Health Greenwich Village (LHGV), Northwell Health’s free-standing emergency department, which is a division of Lenox Hill Hospital. Receiving a personalized tour from Alex Hellinger, Executive Director at LHGV, the interns were provided an overview of the history of health care delivery in this community and the successes and challenges faced by Northwell Health over the last several years. They also were given a preview of the new operating room suites and physician offices currently being built at the site.

hmp-group shot

Last activity of the day, a surprise scavenger hunt in Greenwich Village park. Each team had to find a way to take unique pictures working together, thinking creatively, how to solve the tasks at hand. From getting a tattoo (not a real one.. or maybe?), treating someone in uniform with respect to somehow doubling your team size, the teams put their heads together to solve the mission at hand. The scavenger hunt reinforced Northwell Health’s company values of Truly Compassionate, Truly Innovative, Truly Ambitious, Truly Together and Truly Ourselves. One team came out victorious, receiving the most points for their creative pictures and earned gold medals for their triumph.

Although this was a fun day, these 26 individuals are hard at work at over 12 hospitals and service lines, taking on projects like reviewing financials for new hospital units, determining the most effective way to reduce readmission rates in population health, researching new tools in telehealth to implement, preparing for our annual philanthropy Foundation concert and more. The day after their teambuilding session, they were back to work where some of the HMP interns had the opportunity to take a selfie with our President and CEO, Michael J. Dowling during a session with Senator Elaine Phillips where she thanked thank our nurses for all they do in delivering care and to present Maureen White, chief nursing executive, with a state proclamation.

Does this sound like something you’re made for? Learn more and sign up for notifications about next summer’s program here.

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The next chapter in health care.


The next chapter in health care.

It’s becoming a summer tradition we’re very proud of at Northwell Health: Welcoming the newest talented college juniors who make up the largest class yet in our 8-week Healthcare Management Program (HMP).

This year’s program is going to be massive. We had 675 applications from college students all around the country, up from 516 in 2016, and we chose the 26 students who were ready for the challenge of their lives. We also have 15 Northwell Health hospitals and departments participating in the program, up from 10 last year.

This year’s interns come from as far away as California, Texas, and Utah, connecting the world of health care in the concrete jungle. And while they’ll spend their summer in hot, humid and slightly magical New York City and Long Island, they’ll get a real-life educational experience that you just can’t get in a classroom setting.

Our interns were made for this.

We don’t mess around at orientation — and this isn’t a place for paper pushers. This is a place for people who were made for challenges. Our interns set goals to accomplish before summer’s end, and they’ll get the opportunity to prove to themselves, and their mentors, that they were up to the challenge.

They’ll experience what it means to run a world renowned health care system. Bringing someone coffee isn’t part of the job description, though at times, they might wish for an IV of it themselves. They’ll get to know us intimately and they’ll discover themselves in the process.

And this is only the beginning of their Northwell Health experience. The internship is the perfect stepping-stone to our Management Associate Program (MAP), which is a full time position after graduation. The MAP gives grads a holistic understanding of the business of health care, as well as our overall mission.

It’s also one more way students can grow with us and show how they were made for this.

To help them get started, we put together some advice from our mentors:

Push boundaries. “Embrace new opportunities – even when (especially when) you are out of your comfort zone. That’s when you learn the most about yourself,” – Jenna Tevere, Administrative Director, Emergency Medicine & Surgery, North Shore University Hospital.

Ask for help. “When you start a new project, always make sure you understand what exactly you have been asked to do. If you are at all confused, clarify before starting. It’s better to be honest and ask questions than spin your wheels.” – Ariel Hayes, Sr. Administrative Director, Northwell Health Solutions

Learn from the best. “It is very important to build relationships early on when starting a role in a new department or organization. Success is a team effort and you can learn from everyone, from staff level to executive leadership.” – Gregory Bennett, Sr. Director, Strategic Planning & Business Development, Northwell Health Solutions

It’ll be a summer to remember, and one that will push our interns to a new level of performance and success. It won’t come without long days, hard nights and new challenges.

But hard work in pursuit of a dream is always worth it.

Interested in joining our team? Explore our opportunities for students today.

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Q&A with Adam Becker, HMP Mentor and Graduate


From pre-med to Financial & Operations Management Senior Associate, Adam moved from Chicago to New York to began his career at Northwell Health as Healthcare Management Program intern. His experience as an intern opened his eyes to health care and his experience solidified his decision to accept a full time position post graduation in the administration department at North Shore University Hospital.

Read Adam’s Q&A about being an HMP intern, now HMP mentor, and how the program was a foundation for his career.

Why did you want to participate in the Healthcare Management Program (HMP) and how did you hear about it?

When I began my undergraduate studies at Union College, my initial plans had been to pursue the pre-med track, with the ultimate goal of one day becoming a Physician. Upon taking Intro to Chemistry during one of my first classes at Union, and seeing the grade that I received at the end of the term, I quickly realized that this path would not be for me! Fast forward to my junior year, by that time a declared political science major, I remained eager to find opportunities and experiences that would allow me to pursue a role in healthcare, but in a non-clinical capacity.

While the majority of my internship search efforts were focused on opportunities related to health care policy, I stumbled upon a unique internship experience that was offered by Northwell Health (formerly North Shore-LIJ Health System). The Healthcare Management Program at Northwell Health is an internship designed to provide students with first-hand knowledge and insight into the field of healthcare administration. This seemed far-removed from my initial interests in policy, but also a far destination for a student originally from Chicago. 

After speaking with members of the Northwell team, that unbeknownst to me would soon become my colleagues and mentors; I realized that applying to the Healthcare Management Program would be the perfect opportunity to explore my interests in the healthcare field. By participating in the Healthcare Management Program I could fuse my interests in healthcare, business, and policy in a way that no other program or opportunity could provide.

Can you tell us about your experience in the internship?

As a participant in the Healthcare Management Program I developed the skills required to succeed in a dynamic and fast-paced environment. The internship provided me with an opportunity to explore the field of hospital administration through real project work lead by executive mentors. From the relationships that I developed, to the foundational knowledge gained in both analytics and project management, the internship was a phenomenal experience for my professional growth. Furthermore, the opportunity to learn from, and engage with, executive leadership, clinical leadership, and others, afforded me a unique perspective into the daily roles and responsibilities of healthcare administrators. By gaining exposure to world-class professionals, combined with challenging and exciting project work, the Healthcare Management Program reaffirmed my passion for health care, but more importantly, the experience served as the onramp for my career in health care administration.

After participating in the HMP, what made you decide to take a full time position at Northwell Health in our Management Associate Program as a Financial & Operations Management Associate?

Through my participation in the Healthcare Management Program I gained the skills necessary to be able to succeed in a dynamic professional landscape. As a result, many of the tools that I developed in the internship provided me with the ability to engage with a variety of different organizations, including financial ones, about potential career opportunities. Although I was intrigued by entry-level positions offered by the other companies, I realized that these institutions could never offer the one component of working in health care that I enjoyed the most: the opportunity to impact the life of a patient.  

My decision to join this organization in the Management Associate Program (MAP) was made for that simple reason: to wake up each morning knowing that in some way shape or form I could impact the life of another. The passion that I felt to continue to grow in the organization that had paved my professional foundation, combined with a desire to pursue a career in healthcare was the two main contributing factors towards my decision of joining the Management Associate Program.

How was it mentoring an HMP intern this summer after going through the program yourself?

After having been a participant in the program myself, the opportunity to mentor three Healthcare Management Program interns this summer was a phenomenal experience for me both professionally and personally. From a professional standpoint, just as the Healthcare Management Program provided me with an opportunity to learn a skill set in analytics and project management, mentoring students this summer allowed me to develop my own management skills and style. It was a great experience to be able to train others on the same tools that I had been taught when I had gone through the program just a few years prior. 

On a personal level, the investment that I had in the program as a former participant made the dedication level to the success of the internship experience that much higher. My goal for the summer was to ensure that the students had as beneficial of an experience as I had, if not better.  As one of their mentors, I wanted to provide them with as many opportunities to develop their skill set, form professional relationships, as well as encourage them to cultivate the same passion for health care that I had gained during my own internship experience. The mentorship experience was tremendously rewarding and I am glad that as a former participant I had the opportunity to help others begin their own professional journeys.

purpletip Our 2017 Healthcare Management Program is now open for submission. Become part of our 61,000 strong and submit your resume today. 

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Northwell Health’s Healthcare Management Program


Northwell Health’s Healthcare Management Program Internship. The future of health care is in your hands.

This summer, our newly expanded, elite 8-week Healthcare Management Program (HMP) Internship,  offered undergraduate students a unique opportunity to influence the future of health care. With over 500 applications nationwide, thirteen top students were chosen to participate at one of our ten participating facilities. 

From day one, they were welcomed as a respected member of our team and immersed in real, meaningful project work with executive leaders and mentors- all working together toward the goal of transforming care.  This program engaged and developed our future health care leaders by helping them realize their full potential, and giving them a hand on experience into health care administration and operations at various hospitals and facilities.

During the program, interns were given numerous opportunities to advance their skills and the Northwell Health mission through:

  • Strategic, important project work. Opportunities like, new facility process mapping, annual report creation, hospital performance dashboards, venture capital planning, fundraising initiatives, product line financial reporting, redesigning of hospital units and so much more. 
  • Weekly educational sessions. Lead by our executives, our weekly Lunch & Learns from the best showcased topics such as Finance, Operations, Budgeting, Role of a Healthcare Administrator, Project Management, and Career Mobility.
  • Networking opportunities. From chatting with past HMP interns and mentors at our Alumni Dinner to on-site visits & Lunch & Learns, the HMP interns were immersed in networking opportunities with various leaders and team members.
  • Hospital and facility tours. To help students understand how their impact behind the scenes makes a difference to our overall operations they were given all access tours to our facilities.
  • And yes….we even had time for fun events arranged specifically for the HMP intern group such as our Escape the Room team-building adventure!

As a stepping stone into our Management Associate Program (MAP) after graduation, the HMP internship teaches you that from bedside to the business offices, there is nothing more fulfilling than knowing that we each play an integral part of the care of our patients and the customer experience.  

Don’t just take our word for it; hear from our 2016 HMP Interns….

Ben Bruer

“I came into this internship thinking that I would only do operations work, however I had the opportunity to work on various projects and people within the hospital. The biggest thing I learned is that there is so much coordination between departments and a huge focus on teamwork.”

Ben BruerCohen Children’s Medical Center
Samantha Meisels

“I can confidently say I have been very privileged and lucky to have had such an incredible opportunity. Since day one, I was immediately welcomed with nothing but smiles and guidance. Every single employee made it his/her business to ensure I was helped in any way I needed.”

Samantha MeiselsNorthwell Health Foundation
Dennis Zhang

“I learned the complexity of health care, the costs associated, and the importance of human connection. Healthcare is often overlooked, but few other industries allow people to conclude a work day with an immense feeling of satisfaction and I am fairly convinced it is an industry that I would very much like to participate in.”

Dennis ZhangLong Island Jewish Forest Hills
Matthew Donnelly

“Northwell Health provided me with independence on many projects, allowing me to take the lead, while always having mentors and resources available for guidance.”

Matthew DonnellyNorth Shore University Hospital

lbluetipWe are now accepting applications for the 2017 HMP program. Visit our Students page for up-to-date information.