Helping Students Succeed by Meeting Their Basic Needs
By Linda Breisch, MHS Assistant Director of Nursing
You cannot reach your potential in any part of life unless you have your basic needs met, and that includes your health.
At Milton Hershey School, our students come from difficult backgrounds, and they have a lot of potential. We, as staff, encourage and foster their success. Our goal is to see that students leave here in a better, healthier way than when they came.
To know that we continue to live by the same values and the same mission that Milton and Catherine Hershey created more than a hundred years ago is incredible. I think that speaks to the MHS community. We have staff that are so devoted to the students that they continue to thrive, and we encourage the students to thrive, too.
I have always been a people person. I put people first. In my role at MHS, I’m dealing with real patients and working alongside real staff. I think my interest in nursing came when I would listen to my Aunt Peggy’s stories from working in the emergency room. I could listen to her all day long, and that became something I wanted to do. I tell people now that nursing is the best career ever. You can go anywhere in the world, and meet so many people.
I came to MHS after working at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center as a nurse administrator for 20 years. I first worked in the medical clinic in Senior Division, and then filled the role of assistant director for nursing. I really like the diversity of my job because I do administrative work, and I also get to help out in the clinics.
I love our team approach at MHS. I work with MHS social workers and physicians, talk to our parents/sponsors, and get to use all of the resources the school provides. That’s what is so beautiful about the staff at MHS. We have the resources, our own specialties, and we apply them to enhance our work as a team. Our staff members are top-notch. They care for every individual student and provide excellent patient care. They are excellent clinicians, and we all work as an interdisciplinary team.
The commitment of our staff is also amazing. As workers on the front lines of COVID-19, we were here 24/7, and our staff didn’t miss a beat. Everyone pitched in, came to work when we needed to, and were very responsive. Even though the pandemic is constantly evolving, we have the resources to care for our students – thanks to the MHS administration.
At the end of the day, I feel really fulfilled. I love working with our students, staff, and parents/sponsors. The most rewarding part of my job is helping to close the gap parents/sponsors sometimes feel because they are not here with their children. I think it’s rewarding to be able to give them peace of mind that we are providing the care their children need. They are so appreciative of that. It is a great feeling.