Tag Archives: urmc

New Hire Orientation Day 2

I hate to say it, but I think yesterday was actually the fun day.  I showed up at 8am again, but we got started around 8:15am.  I had to watch 3 videos about HIPAA Privacy stuff.  Very boring, and not too relevant for me, since I’m not dealing with any confidential patient information.

I also had to wait around for an hour while everyone else took the Mandatory In-Service exam.  I’d already taken mine in February with the GME Office.  So it was a very boring morning.

The woman from Environmental Health & Safety came back today to give us a few more Medical Center-specific details, I guess.  We also had an entire presentation on parking.  They were very careful not to mention any costs or prices.

The worst part of the day was sitting through a 2 hour presentation on the new Patient and Family Centered Care, complete with poorly-acted videos filmed at Strong.  Yes, it seems like this should be intuitive, if you enter the healthCARE field, but they are actually making doctors and nurses sign a sheet saying that they care.  Also, ICARE is an acronym.  I find the whole thing upsetting and insulting.  But really?  2 hours?  That’s too long for that kind of presentation.

I’m glad it’s finally over.  Tomorrow I meet with my supervisor and hopefully get into the lab.

Daniel is very skeptical of doctors that have to sign a sheet saying that they care about patients and their families.


New Hire Orientation Day 1

Today was Day 1 of my New Hire Orientation, which I believe is a mandatory, cruel hazing ritual that all new University of Rochester employees must suffer through.  They wanted us to show up at 8am.  One of my biggest flaws is my punctuality.  I showed up to Staybridge Suites across the river from campus at 8am on the button and checked in and got a little binder full of information that I already knew.  I then proceeded to a room where I was supposed to get my ID badge.  I waited in line, got a little sheet of paper with my Employee ID number, and sat down in the chair to get my picture taken.  They then cheerfully informed me that I was “not in the system”.  I have no idea what that means, but it sounded like they said “bureaucracy, bureaucracy, bureaucracy”.

Then we had to go sit in a room and wait until 8:30am, when a woman from Human Resources started showing a powerpoint with all of the information from our binder.  She also read information from the binder out loud as it was being shown on the powerpoint, and as it was sitting in front of us.  Absolutely nothing that she said was new to me.  Right around the time she started reading off of the sheet with all of the “important” phone numbers on it, I decided that I should just start tearing my eyes out.

I was so relieved when she finished around 9:30am.  Then we had a 15 minute break, before a guy presented on Well•U, the University’s initiative to promote a healthier lifestyle for each employee.  He wasn’t so bad, mostly because he presented very quickly.  After that, there was another break, and then a woman came to discuss diversity at the University…with a powerpoint.  The number of useless powerpoints I sat through today was truly astonishing.

My favorite presenter was a woman from Security, who came and told interesting stories about stupid criminals and other crazy things that have happened at the Medical Center, and how to contact Security if you have a problem, etc.  Again, all of this I already knew, since it had been drilled into me during my last 5 years at the University of Rochester.

The last presenter before noon was a woman from Environmental Health & Safety.  This was also probably the most relevant for my work.  Unfortunately it was very boring and felt rushed at the end since we were running a little late.  But I’m sure I will see her again tomorrow, when I have a full day of orientation.  Today was only a half day for me, running from 8am until 12pm.  I have no idea what we will be discussing that was not covered today, but at least I will get a free lunch.

I'm jealous of flowers; they spend all day in the sunshine. Well, except for Rochester flowers, which spend a good deal of time in the rain as well.

Graduation Preparation

Today was my last day in the Graduate Medical Education Office at the Medical Center.  What a strange feeling it is, leaving that place after two years.

Most of today has been filled with graduation preparation.  And it’s the little things that you don’t really think about, like getting a haircut and running to Wegman’s at 9pm to get cheese and baguettes for snacks after the ceremony on Sunday.  Also, I needed to buy a bottle of champagne.  My mother means well, but she bought a bottle of Cook’s, which is notoriously some of the cheapest and worst sparkling wine you can buy.  It’s what they served today at the Senior Toast.  (On a side note:  Thanks, U of R, for letting the champagne sit out in the sun, so that when we finally got around to the toast, it was all nice and warm for us.  Champagne is supposed to be served warm, right?)

Speaking of which, I got a little mention in the Senior Toast.  Sort of.  They threw in something about “And who could forget Bring Your Shovel to School Day”.  Some may remember that I created this Facebook event after the University sent out a e-letter right before a huge snowstorm informing people that they should take proper precaution when walking around campus, like bringing shovels, using handrails, etc.  The event went viral and got thousands of attendees in just a few hours.  It was nuts, but very cool.  The power of the internet…and Facebook.  We united over our bitterness towards the University for their poor sidewalk maintenance in the winter and their even worse habit of not canceling classes during dangerous weather.  Thanks Senior Class Council!

Setting up for Commencement

I definitely made these people uncomfortable with my photo-taking.

Maybe I Can Sleep Again.

Well, I have a job lined up after graduation.  I will be working as a lab technician under the supervision of a woman at the Medical Center.  She is a computational biologist; it will be my job to give her some data to fit to her models.  I’m really excited, but I’m also really scared.  Any time you venture out to do something new, it’s always nerve-wracking.

This also got me thinking about all of the past jobs I’ve held.  While there is no denying that the job I have now can be a bit monotonous and boring, it is by no means the worst job that I have ever had.  That title belongs to my first job, when I was 17 and working at the Unadilla Drive-In, located less than a mile from my childhood home.  It was convenient so I applied.  All of the other workers were also students that attended my high school, Unatego (except for two, one who was home-schooled and lived across the road from my family, and the other had just graduated from Unatego).  Working with my classmates was fun, and it allowed us to forge a bond over how craptastic the job was.  During the first part of the summer, I would show up to work between 6pm and 7pm.  (It was a drive-in theater, so my “workday” didn’t start until just before sundown.)  We would proceed to clean the concession stand and then clean the bathrooms.  I often chose to clean the bathrooms so I could get away from the manager, who was not always the nicest person to be around.

It was an awful task.  Cleaning most bathrooms is not terrible.  Once in a while they get pretty nasty, and you deal with it.  This was not true of the Drive-In’s bathrooms.  The ladies’ room consistently had poo sliding down the wall at any given moment you walked in.  I don’t even understand how that happens, unless your bowels literally explode.  I’m just going to assume that no one was actually taking the poo and throwing it.  (Also, I don’t think the bathrooms had changed since the 1950s, when the place opened.  Of course, now they boast on their website “newly remodeled rest rooms”.)  The men’s bathroom always smelled like urine, even after we scrubbed and mopped with bleach solution.  It was nauseating.  (An aside:  Can one of you males out there please explain to me how pubic hair gets all over the urinals?  Do you rip it out and place it gingerly around the edges?  Or does it just fall out?  You know what?  I don’t really want to know.  I’m sorry I asked.)  Keep in mind that I chose this over being in the same vicinity as the manager; this will be an important detail for later in the story.  Of course, after I finished cleaning bathrooms, I scrubbed my hands with acid really well, put on a fresh pair of plastic gloves, and put together people’s orders.  So if someone ordered a soda, the person at the register would tell me what to get, and I would get it for them.  I touched the register maybe twice while I worked there.  That was fine with me.  At the end of the summer, I got “promoted” to popcorn duty, after the old popcorn guy went back to college.  So my new task was cleaning the popcorn machine everyday and making enough popcorn so that orders didn’t get backed up.  Some nights were okay, and other nights…demand was just too high, and I couldn’t keep up.  Actually, I did okay, but the popcorn machine was slow.

One of the tasks that we had to perform on occasion was combing the lot for garbage and cigarette butts.  This might have been as bad as cleaning the bathrooms.  You always found at least one used condom laying somewhere on the ground.  As I recall, part of this task was to try to collect the most cigarette butts in order to be awarded some kind of “honor”.  I don’t remember what the prize was, but I know that I never got it.

Halfway through the summer, one girl just couldn’t take it anymore.  I think she might have had a breakdown in the concession stand.  The work itself was mostly easy, with the exception that you typically finished the night physically exhausted because of all the running around.  But the manager was pretty mean, and drove this poor girl to tears.  The girl stopped showing up to work after that.  Then, a few weeks later, my friend (who essentially got me the job) also decided to quit.  This was actually her second year working there, and I guess she couldn’t take it anymore either.  I ended up sticking it out, no matter how miserable it made me.  It was worth it for the paycheck and the easy work schedule.  Back then, I was practically nocturnal, so staying up until nearly 2am for work was fine with me.  And being a high school student, you don’t require a large budget, so I actually ended up saving quite a bit of money that summer, even though I only worked a few hours mostly on Fridays and Saturdays.

Since then, my jobs have been much more enjoyable.  My current job is pretty great and I might even miss it when I’m gone.  The women in my office are both friendly and entertaining, but also very accommodating to my crazy schedule as a student.

I look forward to my new job.  It will be an exciting endeavor.

Sidewalk Love

Meliora Moments and Anxiety

I think it is natural that I’m suffering from a little bit of anxiety right now.  I’m going through a huge transition phase in my life.  This is exciting, but really scary.  I will be graduating from college in just over a month.  I remember when I first walked through the doors of my freshman dorm, Susan B. Anthony Hall.


I lived here.

I was the most excited I had ever been about anything.  The fit felt perfect, and I thrived.  I thought hoped it would never end.  My undergraduate experience was phenomenal, except for a few hiccups.  I loved most of the classes I took, but naturally my favorites were all of the biology classes.  After completing more than half of my sophomore year and debating between a degree in Biochemistry or Molecular Genetics, I decided genetics was a better option for me.

Now, I am about to graduate.  I have my first job interview on Thursday for a lab in the UR Medical Center.  This is causing me a great deal of anxiety.  I keep asking myself “What if I don’t get the job?  What if I do get the job?!”  At the same time, I’m very excited for the changes that are about to happen.  I am going to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree, the first in my immediate family to do so.  It’s just a little overwhelming when you are trying to find a job, study for the GRE, and coordinate everything that needs to be done before my graduation, in addition to regular weekly class stuff.  But, as with everything else in my life, I know that I will get everything done on time and I will be okay.

We live in a funny society.

See this bag?

This is a nylon tote bag.

This nylon bag costs upwards of $150.  It is a fairly plain-looking nylon tote bag.  So why the huge price tag?  I think the answer is simple:  people (girls) will buy anything as long as it has the right name stamped onto it.  I, too, have a nylon tote bag.  I paid $12 for it (on sale, of course), it’s larger than the one pictured above, and it has more inner pockets.

I’ve seen this bag popping up all around my university’s campus.  At first, I couldn’t get close enough to the type of girl that typically carries one to figure out the designer or brand.  Although, there was one incidence where I was walking behind a girl with this bag, and tried to follow close enough to see a label.  This resulted in me nearly  falling down all the stairs of Wilson Commons.  Unlike most women, I’m just not that well-versed in designer or brand names.  Honestly, I assumed it was a Ralph Lauren.  Lo and behold, even when I googled Ralph Lauren bags, this one happened to pop up.  That was how I discovered it was the Longchamp Le Pliage.

What’s more disturbing to me is that, compared to most handbags or other designer totes, this pricetag isn’t even that high.  I mentioned Ralph Lauren.  They have a similar-looking canvas tote on their website for over $200.  But the worst thing about this situation, is that I actually kind of want this bag.  Their medium Le Pliage looks like it would be the perfect size for an everyday bag.  That’s another thing I cannot figure out: girls purchase this bag with its ridiculous pricetag and then treat it like garbage by overstuffing it with textbooks and laptops, setting it on the dirty floor of the campus Starbucks (they are always at Starbucks), or neglecting it in various other ways.  Yes, it’s a nylon bag…but it is still a $150 nylon bag that should be cared for properly.  Maybe for some people, that kind of money is a bit more disposable.  I’m sure it’s a fine bag, but I guess for now I will stick with my more modest $12 tote.

I will leave on a positive note.  It’s starting to look like spring.  I even got a picture of the sun reflecting off of the Medical Center and MRB.  Not my best work, but I couldn’t bring myself to stand in the middle of the sidewalk taking a picture of the Med Center.  I quickly snapped this shot as I walked to my car.


It was sunny today.


And although you can’t see it here, grass is beginning to reappear around Rochester.  Slowly.