Theory of Connectivity...

Alex King

Alex King ’12, a neuroscience and art double major, began work at Phoebe home as an intern, a position he learned about through the health professions department at Muhlenberg. He recognized the relevancy that an aging generation has in relation to his work in neuroscience.

“There’s a rising need for these providers,” says Alex. “I wanted to gain the perspective of the residents, something I hadn’t been able to manage before.”

Alex was interested in understanding the type of care that Phoebe Home provides for its residents. When he first met Heinz, a resident at Phoebe, Alex had no idea that they both held strong interests in art. While Alex held a sculpture concentration at Muhlenberg, Heinz was an avid painter. They began working together when Alex would draw sketches for Heinz, who found perspective challenging, to color.

He enjoyed combining aspects of both neuroscience and art, two disciplines often viewed, at least on the surface, as independent fields of study. The internship even helped him explore his painting; he’s planning to visit Heinz this semester to show his latest pieces.

“I’d definitely recommend that students try new ways to interact and volunteer with the community, especially if they can find activities outside of their normal comfort zone,” says Alex. “Exposure to a new experience helped me become a better person - you might be surprised at the insight these opportunities give.”

"Alex's experiences in the Life Review internship allowed him to see how much impact he can have on an individual by just listening to his/her life story," says Dr. Elizabeth McCain, professor of biology and chair of the biology department. "Through this internship, Alex not only learned more about the inner-workings of the healthcare system, but also discovered he now has a great interest in geriatric medicine."

 

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