Michelle Wan

"The opportunity to work directly with patients and healthcare providers was an important factor in my decision to serve with National Health Corps."

Educational Background: A.B. in History from Davidson College

Host Site: Patient Advocate at Philadelphia Department of Public Health - Ambulatory Health Services, Health Center 2

Why did you join National Health Corps?
When searching for meaningful post-graduate opportunities, I found that few positions of employment provided a comparable level of professional development and direct community engagement that service with AmeriCorps would provide. The opportunity to work directly with patients and healthcare providers was an important factor in my decision to serve with National Health Corps. I am excited to gain first-hand experience in the public health field.

What are your plans after AmeriCorps service?
Applying to medical school

Tell us about an employment, service, or research experience that was important to you.
As a volunteer at a free clinic in the town where I attended college, I had the opportunity to interact with patients on their first visits to the clinic. Among other tasks, student volunteers prepare blank charts for new patients. This requires conducting short interviews with the patients to take down their demographic information. Some of these interviews only lasted a few minutes, but they were the most exciting component of our responsibilities as student volunteers, because we could interact directly with the patient population we were serving.

What first sparked your interest in community service?
I discovered that volunteering was a great way to get out of the campus bubble and learn about the town community. I saw how valuable service was in strengthening community resources and social bonds.

What about Philadelphia excites you the most?
I love exploring new cities! Philadelphia is especially exciting because of its historical significance. I'm looking forward to finding the best food in the city.

What is your favorite food?
I wouldn't say I have a single favorite dish, but I really like Thai food.

Hometown: San Francisco, CA