The South Dakota Association of Healthcare Organizations (SDAHO) is excited to introduce one of two 2022 summer interns. Katie Zenisek is from Oswego Illinois and attended Augustana College in Rock Island Illinois. Katie recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Health and Biology with a minor in Chemistry.
Katie’s internship is funded through the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and is administered through the Kennedy Krieger Institute based out of Baltimore and is called MCHC Rise-Up, with the goal to increase diversity in public health leadership. There are three internship sites across the country, one in California, one in Baltimore and one in South Dakota through the University of South Dakota.
Katie has been tasked with updating legislative districts maps for the SDAHO advocacy team in addition to a variety of other projects. “I’m also working on a nursing one-pager focusing on South Dakota’s nursing shortage. In addition, I am helping with information on medical conscience, the pediatric crisis plan, Medicaid expansion, and the Hometown Healthcare Heroes project.”
Katie plans on taking a gap year and working before attending medical school. Her hope is to work in family medicine or women’s healthcare. “I grew up low income and I saw how hard that was for my mom to take care of her kids. So as a physician I want to work closely with mothers and families to make sure their families can be healthy, in any sort of circumstance they are facing.”
Katie has already visited the state capitol in Pierre, learning about public policy and healthcare. “It’s exciting how expansive public health can be.”
When not working, Katie enjoys serving as a Special Olympics coach, which she plans to continue when she returns to Illinois. Katie is also an avid reader and enjoys embroidery.
SDAHO is excited to have Katie Zenisek as one of two 2022 SDAHO Summer Interns. To watch Katie’s video, visit the SDAHO YouTube Channel here.