Mighty Blog

Children’s Minnesota employee celebrates Chinese New Year

Ed Ji discusses his role and how he celebrates the Lunar New Year

Lunar New Year (or Spring Festival) is the Chinese festival that celebrates the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese calendar. As its name suggests, the date of the Lunar New Year depends on the phase of the moon and varies from year to year. Lunar New Year is celebrated in countries and territories with significant Chinese populations, including China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Tibet, Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia and many others. Though the festival varies by country, the themes of reunion and hope are the main messages that are echoed for the new year. Lunar New Year ranges from Jan. 21 to Feb. 20 and will be on Jan. 25 this year.

In honor of Chinese New Year, we spoke with Ed Ji, a clinical systems analyst at Children’s Minnesota and member of our Asian Employee Resource Group (ERG) about his role at Children’s, the ERG and what he loves about the holiday. Read on to get to know Ed!

Please describe your role at Children’s:

I work in the Clinical Applications ITS department specifically on the Person Management/Scheduling team. We help build, maintain, and improve the Cerner Applications within Children’s.

How long have you worked at Children’s?

I am closing in on a year. 11 months and some change so far.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

My day is typically filled with collaboration. I work with individuals throughout the organization. From analysts to collaborate on improving and providing new functionality, to front end clinical and non-clinical users to listen to their application improvement needs and support in everyday issues, to Clinic Managers in listening and providing workflow and application improvements to make their clinic run smoother. In this role, I get to meet so many individuals that have the same goal in mind, to improve the experience of every child that walks through our doors. When I am not in meetings to discuss projects and goals aimed to do that, I am in the tools implementing those ideas.

Ed Ji

What do you love most about your job?

To be able to help the kids that visit Children’s. When working in Edina, you typically do not see the application you support in action. However, since arriving at Children’s, I have observed a culture of always putting kids first and really appreciating every individual that helps us reach those goals. I am able to hear and occasionally see first hand, the impact of our changes. It is truly all the motivation you need to do what I do.

What can you tell us about Chinese New Year, its importance and how the holiday is traditionally celebrated?

Chinese New Year is the most important holiday in China. It is marked by the Chinese Lunar Calendar and it is celebrated traditionally with family and friends; but it is also a time to honor ancestors. Your everyday life comes to a halt to really focus on family, home, and, of course, food! Many traditions, such as, setting firecrackers to ward off evil spirits or handing out red pouches filled with money to give to children, are meant to bring good fortune to the household and a long life to the family. You can also rest assured there are no shortcomings in the food department. Some of my personal favorite and most delicious are dumplings and spring rolls that represent wealth, sweet rice balls (family togetherness), Chinese noodles (happiness and long life), and Moon Cake!

What do you want families and staff at Children’s to know about Chinese New Year, as well as our Asian ERG?

Chinese New Year is similar to New Year’s here in terms of reflecting on things you’ve done and moving toward a brighter future, with a large emphasis on family. As for information on the Asian ERG, I am still relatively new, but everyone is welcome!

What do you think makes kids amazing?

Kids are great because of their curiosity. They are able to see the beauty in every moment of life. They’re energetic, unbiased, and full of silly and fun ideas. They are tenderhearted and care deeply about everyone and everything.

Kaitlyn Kamleiter