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First week at the New Orleans Children’s Advocacy Center and — wow — I really have no complaints. I truly feel empowered in this space, I feel like I am learning, and I am learning a lot about myself… especially when it comes to my work style and my possible future aspirations. My boss is a trip, seriously. She’s like wonder woman. She is so educated, knows everyone in town, everyone wants to have her do workshops, she runs her own non-profit, and she just seems to hold it all together (not to mention she’s genuinely happy and interested in our work, all of the time.) I’m learning so much from her regarding corporal punishment, abuse, the judicial system, public health issues in New Orleans, and how to keep yourself motivated when some days are harder than others. Also, working in this environment is very motivating, because every case manager, nurse practitioner, and social worker treats everyone like they’ve been working here forever. They trust us and constructively criticize us throughout our work process.

For me, I could not have thought of a more ideal workplace this summer, especially since I am seeing where medicine and public health could possibly take me.

I’m ready for the following 7 weeks, the community I’ll be learning about and working on projects for, and to do some thoughtful self-reflection (along with trying all of these amazing foods!)

P.S. Speaking of food, here’s a picture of me at the Creole Tomato Festival from this past weekend. Who would’ve thought tomatoes could be cooked and blended in so many different ways? Just NOLA things.