Monthly Archives: September 2012

Mother-Daughter Volunteer Team: Pamela & Christine Neal

Volunteers Christine and Pamela Neal

Over the past two months, both Pamela and Christine Neal have shared their time on the inpatient units in St. Paul. Pamela has volunteered with us for nearly 5 years, with nearly 1,500 service hours, and will continue on over the school year. Pamela’s daughter, Christine, attends college at the University of California in Santa Barbara, and was able to volunteer more than 35 hours over her summer break!

Thanks, ladies, for all of the time that you’ve shared with us at Children’s! You make a great mother-daughter team!

Red Vested Rockstar: Vince Opheim

Vince... doing what he does best (Having fun!)

Children’s Volunteer Services presents: Red-Vested Rockstar!

Edition 1: Meet Vince!

1.   Why he ROCKS?!

 Vince is, as the title states, a ROCKSTAR of a volunteer! He volunteers on our inpatient units in Minneapolis, serves as our ‘Twinkle’ mascot at various events, and helps out at Diabetes Support Groups in St. Paul. After toying with the teaching vs. social work professions, Vince has now settled on attending nursing school. If his plan works out, he will be working here at Children’s someday:  pediatrics is a must for Vince. He stays inspired to volunteer from all of the smiles that he receives on a weekly basis, and we are beyond pleased to have him on our team!

 2.   Favorite thing to do outside of volunteering?

 “I love running, playing football, competing in Mud Runs, and hanging with friends, as well as spending time with my nephews and niece!”

 3.   Do you have any kids or pets of your own?

 “I have a Beagle named Gracie.”

 4.   If you could create a new candy bar, what would be in it and what would you name it?

 “Sugar-free chocolate, Lorna Doone cookies, and banana:  I will call it the ‘DiabetiBar.’

 5.   Share a favorite volunteer experience or story:

   “One of my favorites (and a recent experience!) was playing with a sibling who was here with her baby brother. She wanted a volunteer, so we started playing a couple of games of ‘Sorry!’ and ‘Uno.’ We then started talking about her favorite band, Black Eyed Peas, and after signing “Imma Be” a few too many times, she decided it was time to ‘throw me in jail!’ This was no normal jail walk for us. We would moon walk, bunny hop, skip, pretend we were a train, and even salsa! It was fun and non-stop laughter; even some of the staff got involved! The best part was after I dropped her off in her baby brother’s hospital room. She decided to show him some of her new moves, and gave me a huge smile…which left MY smile permanently glued to my face.”

Summer Stories: Volunteer Katelyn Paget

Volunteer Katelyn Paget

Katelyn Paget volunteered over the summer months on the inpatient units, and is now beginning her first semester of nursing school!

What do you study, and what are your future plans?

I am going into my freshman year at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, studying nursing.

What made you decide to volunteer over the summer months at Children’s Hospital?

I decided to volunteer this summer because I am headed to college this fall and needed to solidify my decision that nursing was the right path for me to take. When you volunteer, you learn so much that will come in handy for any health care profession like what the emergency codes mean, precautions when entering the room, bedside manner, and so much more! After spending time firsthand in the hospital, watching all the nurses go about their jobs and interacting with patients, I am 100% sure that I want to be a nurse!

Tell us about a fun or memorable volunteering moment.

My most memorable volunteering moment this summer was when a little girl came into the playroom and we started to make a friendship bracelet out of embroidery floss;  two other patients then saw us making them and joined in.  Everyone started talking with each other-even the parents!  It turned into quite a party and was really fun! I am really glad that Children’s gave me this summer opportunity.

Thanks, Katelyn, for spending the summer with us at Children’s, and best of luck in the new school year!

FREE Flu & Tdap Vaccines Available Soon!

It’s that time of year again:  the State Fair has ended, school has begun, and people are beginning to ask us about…FLU SHOTS!  The following employee & volunteer vaccine clinics have been scheduled this fall on both Children’s campuses, and will offer nasal & injectable flu vaccines, as well as Tdap (pertussis) boosters:


September 24, 25, 27, & October 18:  Back Education Center (2nd Floor)

5:45 am-6:00 pm

Children’s-St. Paul

October 1, 2, 4, & 25:  Garden View 1053/1054

5:45 am-3:30 pm

These vaccines are FREE, and are offered to all current volunteers!  Beginning this fall, documentation of a Tdap vaccine will be required of all volunteers, and flu vaccines are always strongly recommended (those who are not vaccinated will need to wear a mask when working with patients).  For further information, please feel free to ask any Volunteer Services staff member, or contact Children’s Employee Health at (612) 813-6140.

Pediatric Grand Rounds: September 2012

Grand Rounds: Meetings at which physicians discuss the clinical case of one or more patients. Grand rounds originated as part of residency training, wherein new information was taught and clinical reasoning skills were enhanced. Grand rounds today are an integral component of medical education. They present clinical problems in medicine by focusing on current or interesting cases (

Pediatric Grand Rounds at Children’s are open to all interested volunteers! Grand Rounds are held each Thursday from 8-9 am at the following locations:

Minneapolis Campus:

2525 Chicago Avenue, Minneapolis:  video conference shown in Medical Education Room B-870

St. Paul Campus:

255 N. Smith Avenue, St. Paul:  live presentation in the John Nasseff Conference Center

September 2012 Sessions:

9/6: “Effective Vaccination Communication: Shared Goals in Safety”

Presented by Patsy Stinchfield, RN, CNP, Advanced Practice Registered Nurse, Infectious Diseases, Pediatric Immunology at Children’s Hospital

9/13: Child Abuse, TBA

Presented by Mark Hudson, M.D., Pediatrician, Child Abuse Pediatrics, Midwest Children’s Resource Center

9/20: No Grand Rounds (Registration only event)

9/27: “Current Outcomes for Surgical Palliation of Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome”

Presented by David M. Overman, M.D., Pediatric Congenital Cardiovascular Surgeon, Thoracic Surgeon, Children’s Heart Clinic (Presented in Minneapolis)