What brought you to Dana-Farber?
After living in a lot of different countries and states, I fell in love with a "Mainer," and we moved to southern Maine in 2008. I kept looking at job advertisements at Dana-Farber and said to myself, “I can make this happen. This amazing place is within reach.” It’s worked out beautifully thus far.
What does your job involve?
I work as the program nurse for the Cancer Care Equity Program. Our program's goal is to reduce disparities in cancer care by providing expert oncology care right in the community. I triage the patients who are referred to our clinic, do community education on a host of oncology-related topics, and navigate patients across the treatment continuum once they are diagnosed with cancer and referred to the appropriate Dana-Farber disease center. Every day is different and brings new experiences. It's an amazing role.
How does your role contribute to the mission of Dana-Farber?
Our goal is to see everyone and give them access to the stellar care at Dana-Farber. I always say to patients, "You will have access to the best doctors and nurses and scientists at our institute." Everything we do in the Cancer Care Equity Program directly aligns with our Dana-Farber mission. We are addressing disparities in cancer care right in our backyard, and that’s something to be proud of.
What's the biggest challenge that you face in your role?
The patients we see struggle with so many other issues that it oftentimes is hard to get them to come to their appointments. They may work three jobs and not have paid time off to come to their visits. Or they may have cultural reservations about being seen. It takes a lot of patience, creativity, and sensitivity to address all of these needs.
What do you do for fun in your spare time?
I don't have enough spare time to do all the things I love. My husband and I have an apple/pear orchard, and we try to grow most of our own vegetables. I'm a big foodie and love to cook feasts for our friends. I also love to do hot yoga, all things outdoorsy, and fire spinning. Most importantly, I love spending time with our beautiful son, Abner, whom we adopted last year and who just celebrated his first birthday.