To many people, my future career choice might sound odd. When I say ChildLife specialist everyone looks at me like what the heck is that? Let me tell you a little more about my strange career choice. In ChildLife there are many responsibilities that take place on a daily basis. The most important one is being there for your kids each and every day. When I walk into a hospital my number one objective will be to make sure the child is being well taken care of. Specifically, I would focus on the mental component. By well taken care of, I do not mean physically, because obviously, the hospital will take care of the children. I take care of the mental side of things like anxiety before and after surgery. My job will be to work with kids before they undergo a certain type of procedure, and that does not mean surgery, it could be MRI, Ct Scan, anything with a machine. If they have never done anything like those things before I would tell them what is going to happen, what happens after the fact, and everything in between. To kids, hospitals are really scary. It is my job to make sure that they are distracted before and after surgery. For example, when my cousin Emily was in the hospital, the ChildLife specialist at the UW Children’s Hospital brought in the UW Madison Track and Field team after she went through an MRI. She was so scared and the distraction of the team helped her a lot.
My career is so rare that there are only two schools that specialize and offer a major in this job. The two schools are UW Stout and Edgewood. Edgewood is a great campus with a lot of resources right inside of the college. For example, when joining this program after passing you are basically guaranteed a job at the UW Madison hospital. As for UW Stout, I am not exactly sure what the benefits are past the fact that it is one out of the two schools that have this major.
Childlife is an amazing career with a lot of advantages and disadvantages. For many people to help children is something that could change a person’s life forever. But a downfall from that is the child is not guaranteed to make it every single time; sometimes the child does not make it out of surgery, sometimes they do not get better from whatever they came into the hospital for. I am approaching my future career knowing there can be difficult days that will definitely be a challenge, but it is a challenge I am willing to conquer for the success and well-being of children. My passion and drive is to better the lives of children, and that will be my approach going in.