Last summer, I was searching for an internship after my first year of graduate school at Carnegie Mellon University, where I was working toward a Master of Science in Health Care Policy and Management. My program director reached out to me with an opportunity to intern with Swedish’s LGBTQI+ Initiative. At the time I interviewed, the Initiative was led by medical director Kevin Wang, M.D., and program manager Peter Mann-King, who is an alum of my program at Carnegie-Mellon. I was ecstatic!
I grew up on the East Coast and hadn’t heard of Swedish, but I knew of Providence through my studies surrounding not-for-profit health systems. I was motivated to grow my knowledge about health systems.
My internship projects focused on data analysis, project management and healthcare information systems. I was continuously challenged as the work progressed. The experience fostered personal and professional growth. I challenged myself, met with Swedish leadership often, consulted with departments across the entire organization, developed analyses and reports and much more.
I also learned an enormous amount about the LGBTQIA+ community here in Seattle. I felt extremely proud to advocate for such an amazing and strong community through my work with the LGBTQI+ Initiative team here at Swedish. I know Swedish will continue to strive to be a leader in LGBTQI+ care as the Initiative has now become a fully operationalized LGBTQI+ program under the leadership of the Swedish Office of Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.
Peter Mann-King, Dr. Wang and my fellow intern, Kyla Borders, were all critical in shaping my incredible experience at Swedish. It wasn’t easy doing the internship and final year of my master’s program together, but it was more than worth it.
I learned more than I ever could have imagined and am extremely grateful for the opportunities I was given.
Interested in helping shape LGBTQI+ care at Swedish?
We are seeking patients interested in joining the LGBTQI+ patient advisory/listening sessions. The goal of the patient advisory group is to improve LGBTQI+ care at Swedish. We estimate a time commitment of up to two hours per month, and we plan to offer a $15 gift card to those who join us as a thank you for the expertise each of our members bring. The LGBTQI+ patient advisory/listening sessions will work alongside Swedish caregivers and leadership to build a safe and inclusive community space and provide input and guidance on the LGBTQI+ Program and make recommendations for Swedish's other LGBTQI+ programming and services. Contact SwedishLGBTQIA+PFAC@swedish.org if you are interested.
Need a provider?
If you have questions or would like to learn more about the LGBTQI+ Initiative efforts at Swedish, visit our transgender health website.
For referrals, help with coordination or general information about transgender health at Swedish, please call 1-866-366-0926.