Andrew Klabunde ’22 — Over the last month of my internship at the Fountain & Warren Health Department, I have learned that public health extends well beyond food safety. This internship has helped me to see that the health department plays a major role in helping the public get vaccines, installing septic systems, maintaining vital records like birth and death certificates, and much more! Beyond these, I have also learned that the health department plays a major role in event planning. As an intern, I have been given the opportunity to attend a meeting with the health department’s environmentalist where I saw the behind the scenes planning of a Luke Bryan concert. From this experience, I learned there were a lot of moving parts required for the success and safety of the event. Additionally, I was later given the opportunity to attend a commissioner meeting with the health department’s environmentalist where I learned about the politics behind what the health department is and is not allowed to do.
Overall, my experience with the health department has been amazing! I have been given the opportunity to learn about many areas of health that I had never thought about before. Moreover, I have been able to see how many positions within the community all tie together regarding public health. As a result, seeing the health department work with many different groups has helped me understand the reality that public health is impacted by a large variety of sources. In all, it has been a truly enlightening experience so far.