Sunday, December 20, 2015

Our Fellowship Journey

After graduating with a degree in healthcare administration, you can either do an administrative fellowship at a large hospital or take a job in healthcare at a hospital or clinic. Fellowships are generally 1 year and don't pay very well, but they give you a lot of valuable experience and they usually end in an offer for a job that does pay pretty well. Rog had a hard time deciding if he should pursue a fellowship (lots of prayer, fasting, and asking advice from mentors), but ultimately decided he would. The fellowship application process is very intense and very competitive. I'm grateful Rog took a light class load this semester, so he could have plenty of time to focus on fellowships.

For each fellowship he created a folder like this one to send his application in. 

Included in each folder was his resume, cover letter, letters of recommendation, and essays specific to each fellowship.

Most of the applications were due in September and early October. Early in the process he wasn't getting any interviews. He doesn't necessarily stand out on paper, but he interviews extremely well, so I knew if he could just get some interviews he'd be golden. It was just getting those interviews that was challenging! He asked for feedback from those early applications and refined his resume and cover letter as he continued to apply for more. He ended up applying all over the country (mostly on the east and west coasts) in Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Oregon, Washington, California, and Colorado (for multiple fellowships in each state).

After those first rejections, he started getting phone interviews and from there he got fly-out interviews with Kaiser in Oregon, Johns Hopkins in Maryland, and Centura in Colorado. His first fly-out interview was with Kaiser in Oregon. That was his first choice and although the interview went extremely well, he wasn't chosen. (One of the applicants was chosen because he had specific experience with something they were looking for and the other applicant was chosen because he was from the University of Minnesota.) He asked for feedback and they couldn't really give him any (because he did so well) which was frustrating.

However, one of the interviewers really liked him and asked if he would interview for a full-time position. He interviewed for that position (while he was also doing the fly-out interviews in Maryland and Colorado) and was offered a job as a project manager. About the same time, he was offered two fellowships in Colorado (one in Denver and one in Colorado Springs) and was also waiting to hear from Johns Hopkins. They were all good options (with pros and cons to each), but we ultimately decided to take the job with Kaiser in Oregon. He turned down the fellowship offers in Colorado and turned down Johns Hopkins before they even told him if he was selected (so we will never know if he got that one or not).

I've never lived outside Utah and I've never even been to Oregon, but we've heard nothing but great things about it. We are excited for the adventures that await us there! We'll be in the Portland area, but we don't know exactly where yet. Rog doesn't start his job until June 13th, so we have a lot of time to figure it out. We'll be flying out there sometime this spring to check out different suburbs of Portland and look at houses.

We have some family in the Portland area, but none that we know very well. (I'm sure we'll get to know them!) And I'm grateful to know we'll have a ward there to take care of us and become our friends. (I don't know how people make friends without the church!) I'm also excited to know we'll have a temple close by - the Portland Oregon temple.

Even though we started this journey with the goal to get a fellowship, we feel like this is the right opportunity for us - especially since we likely wouldn't have found this job otherwise. Oregon, here we come! 


tracy said...

Wow! A journey indeed! I think you will like Portland, it is a beautiful area.

Yes, I think you will love living in another state....very educational!

tracy said...

Ummmm, you can find friends just by talking to your that too weird?