Giving Back Matters: Physician Started as a Volunteer

volunteer-gangwer

What’s one of the best ways to gain experience at your dream job or give back to your community? Become a volunteer. 

Nickolas Gangwer, DO, started his career at Intermountain Healthcare as a volunteer at McKay-Dee Hospital where he says that the volunteering experience is one he will never forget. He is now an internal medicine physician at the hospital and still finds himself remembering his volunteer days.

What's a day like as a volunteer?

"I was a premed student at Weber State University, but I'd never actually worked in a healthcare setting," says Dr. Gangwer. "Volunteering for Intermountain was a great exposure for me. It helped me understand the healthcare work environment and it was a lot of fun."

As a volunteer, Dr. Gangwer spent much of his time in the pre-op and the emergency department. He remembers seeing a lot of what happens behind the scenes, such as transporting patients to the operating rooms and learning about the importance of making sure everything in the hospital environment is clean and sterilized.

"I met a lot of staff and we talked about their roles," he says. "When I think back, it really gave me a better appreciation for the entire staff and how everyone fits together. I also really enjoyed interacting with the patients."

Why do our volunteers love it?

Daniel Barrack, a current volunteer at McKay-Dee who is a senior in high school and a sophomore at the Weber State University Davis campus, also applauds being an Intermountain volunteer. "You're able to see the different sides of what happens in healthcare," says Daniel, who plans on pursuing a career as a doctor and gives about 8 hours of time each week at McKay-Dee Hospital. "It feels great to help people as they walk through the doors."

Rainey Guzman, volunteer director at McKay-Dee adds, "Our volunteers help enhance the patient and family experience as well as gain personal experience by giving back to our community. Each volunteer has a different story about why they are here."

 

How can you become a volunteer?

Volunteers are an important part of Intermountain Healthcare’s mission to help people live the healthiest lives possible. They give back to our communities at hospitals and clinics across Utah and in Burley, Idaho.