Day 45: Last day!

Friday was my last day at the internship. I participated with Mr. Sherrard at another health fair located on base inside the NATTC hanger. Last year, the population was over 3,000 and this year, it was close to that again! However, I heard that the number of vendors this year decreased compared to last year. The population was mainly 18-30 year old male and female activity duty military. We represented the Naval Hospital and Deployment Health and Wellness with promotion of nutrition, safe sex and smokeless tobacco cessation. We passed out a lot of brochures and condoms at this event. Mr. Sherrard printed out more of the Nutrition brochures that I made for Monday’s health fair and passed them out as well. I thought that was cool and rewarding! I got to speak with a lot of people about nutrition. This strengthened my knowledge on the concepts of nutrition material. I enjoyed it and my last day of being an intern. It’s a bittersweet day because I am happy to be done and graduating but sad to leave the Naval Hospital and its staff. I’ve enjoyed this experience and everyone that I have worked with! On Tuesday of next week I am going to lunch with some of the staff as a farewell, so that will be nice! Thank you to Mr. Sherrard for letting me shadow him this semester!

Daily hours: 5

Total hours: 360


Day 44: (04/25/13)

On Thursday, I spent 5 hours studying with a fellow classmate for the CHES exam. We went to Panera Bread, ate lunch, and sat outside. It was fun! I will be taking the exam on Saturday, so this will probably be the last full day that I will be able to study. My classmate Kim and I have been studying every Tuesday and Thursday this semester since January. We read the entire NCHEC study book and took the practice exam twice. Today when we studied, we reviewed the answers we got incorrect on the practice exam and studied those concepts. We also read over areas that we felt needed improvement. Overall, I think I am ready for the exam! Becoming a Community Health Education Specialist will help to improve my career opportunities and give me the credentials needed to perform my job as a health educator.

Daily hours: 5

Total hours: 355

Day 43: Thank you’s!

My morning started by meeting with Mr. Sherrard and Nancy at the office. We discussed potential job opportunities and they gave me some great advice. Mr. Sherrard took the MCHES exam last weekend at the SOPHE conference, and I will be taking it this weekend (APRIL 27), so he went over the type of questions that I can expect with me. We then designed a thank you letter to mail/hand deliver to all participating vendors that were at the health fair on Monday. Nancy is going to send it over to the hospital CO to sign first. I called Tara to get a list of all the Naval Hospital staff that participated and then I came home and compiled a list of the outside vendors. I made some phone calls/emails to get some of their names and addresses as well. This was fun because I got to personally thank them again for helping make our health fair a success. The letter they receive via mail will be an official document signed by the CO and describes their efforts in our event which will be something great to share on all of their resumes as well.

Friday I plan to help Mr. Sherrard with another health fair that he is participating in (on base at the NATTC hanger). It is targeted to 18-22 year old military students and their attendance is actually required which makes it interesting. We will be promoting safe sexual contacts, smokeless tobacco, and nutrition. It’s from 9-1 and I will give Mr. Sherrard a break and run the booth from 10:30-1. I’m looking forward to it. This should be a good experience and nice way to end the semester!

I spent the remainder of my afternoon looking up funded certifications on MyCAA through the DoD and their active duty spouse benefit programs. I ended up applying for the American Council on Exercise Group Fitness Instructor Program. I think it will be a good certification to have in case I cannot find a job right away with my CHE degree. I can always use it to teach fitness classes on or off base. They also have a Health Coach Certificate program that I am interested in. I’m allowed up to 2,000 per year of funding from MyCAA and plan to take the Health Coach or some other certification after I complete the GFI (Group Fitness Instructor) exam. 🙂

I also spent more time preparing and studying for the CHES exam today. Lots coming up to get ready for! Graduation is in 10 days– woo hoo!!

Daily hours: 8

Total hours: 350




Today’s health fair was my first organized event and turned out to be a great success! I couldn’t be happier. The weather held out great with partly cloudy skies, warm weather but not too hot, and a slight breeze. My day started at 8am picking up the fruit basket from the commissary. That thing must of weighed 5 pounds! Then, I went over to the Naval Hospital to start setting up tables and preparing for our vendors to arrive. Mr. Sherrard, Nancy (his secretary), and Tara Rettig were all there upon my arrival. We made a great team and helped one another to ensure that everything happened that needed to get done. Mr. Sherrard ran and got some spring & patriotic balloons while I went back to the commissary and used the left over money from the $50 gift card to purchase 5 bags of cuties (california mandarin oranges). When I returned, vendors started to arrive and set up. The event started close to 11 and the volume was pretty steady all the way until 1pm. My husband came by to visit and had lunch/visited the vendors, which was nice. MWR was grilling chicken, veggie, and pineapple shish kabobs which were delish, along with a bottle of water for only $5! So below is the list of vendors that we had participating at our health fair ( I thought it was a great mix and covered all areas!):

  • Deployment Health & Wellness Center (Me, Nancy, & Jim) promoting Nutrition & Wellness. I handed out cutie oranges and we also had participants fill out the incentive cards so they could have a chance at winning the fruit basket!
  • The hospital’s MWR (Morale Wellness and Recreation) who were the ones grilling and selling the shish kabobs
  • Breast Health, NHP- Michelle Welks
  • Escambia County Department of Health
  • Escambia County Department of Health & Tobacco Cessation
  • AHEC & Tobacco Cessation
  • DAPA- Drug & Alcohol Prevention & Awareness, Navy program
  • Commissary promoting healthy eating as well
  • NEX- Navy Exchange promoting their fitness gear
  • SHEP club from UWF promoting Sun Protection
  • Massage Therapy- Molly Warren also from UWF
  • Evelyn Johnson & Joyce Robinson promoting preventive disease management (DIABETES & ASTHMA)
  • TriCare
  • PFAC Patient support
  • Family First Network promoting family health and adoption/foster care services
  • Suicide Prevention NHP
  • Sexual Assault NHP

As you can see, it was a great turn out and also a great experience for me! Pictures below 🙂

Daily hours: 8

Total hours: 342












On Wednesday morning at 4:30am, I met the SHEP club members (Students for Health Education and Promotion) at UWF and rode with them in a 12 passenger van to Orlando, FL to attend the SOPHE Conference (Society of Public Health Educators). We stayed 3 days and came home late Friday evening (so was gone April 17-19). The conference was a great experience and enhanced my knowledge of Community Health Education and our role in society.

Each day, we had an opening Plenary session and a closing Plenary session, each which consisted of well educated and informative health educators. On Thursday, the opening Plenary was about promoting awareness through story tactics, and even more specifically– positive ones versus negative. For example, this video shows a seat belt commercial that gives more of a negative impact or scare tactic versus the next one which is more positive.

In between the opening and closing plenary speakers, we had the choice of which presentations we would like to sit in on based on the subject and speaker. This was nice because we got to experience a variety of health topics and/or studies done by these professionals and also the given choice to pick a topic based on whether it applies to or interests us. These were called Concurrent Sessions. Here’s a list of the ones I attended:

  • Impacting Health through Community Engagement (2 speakers)
  1. What Policy Makers need to hear from Emergency Preparedness Practitioners about Community Engagement
  2. Investigation of the role of religious affiliation and religious beliefs on health decision making of religious leaders in appalachian communities. THIS STUDY/SPEAKER WAS MY FAVORITE 🙂 It really inspired me to want to promote wellness among churches. I firmly believe that there is a connection between the mind, body, and spirit. Studies prove that those who experience spiritual health are more likely to be overall “healthy” than those who do not have any religious affiliations or spirituality. I would absolutely love to work with churches and write health programs for their community. It would be like worksite wellness but instead the church’s health/wellness.
  • Exploring Perceptions of Health Care Reform (Thursday, 2 speakers) My 2nd favorite, great topic discussions following the presentations!
  1. Perceptions from leading health educators of how the affordable care act has, and will, stir the health education pot.
  2. Understanding state level attitudes toward healthcare reform

*One neat thing about this presentation. So, my professor Ms. Malley (see picture below), had just taught us in class about the ACA (Affordable Care Act) through a document that was published on the SOPHE website only days before. And the guy who wrote that document stood up at the end of this presentation during the questions segment to comment on the presentation and announced that he was the author. Here is the website with that document: Image

Since the ACA is such a lengthy document, this man condensed the material and targeted it to Community Health Educators so that we could take the parts the pertained to us and read them. Another interesting facts is that the word “health educator” only appears once in the entire law. The author of the SOPHE document writes his concerns with this and also discusses the opportunities and challenges for health education specialists. I left this meeting feeling motivated to spread our title as CHES (Community Health Education Specialist) because it is a new profession and in high demand, yet the population doesn’t know what we are capable of.

  • Using Technology & Social Media to Influence Health (3 speakers)
  1. Text messaging and cigarette consumption in college students seeking smoking cessation and assistance: a dual university pilot study
  2. Look, a Flash Mob! Combining traditional teaching methods with popular culture trends to teach college students and the community about elder abuse. *This one was the best and I thought it was neat because he was a professor from UGA (where I transferred from) and the flash mob was filmed on central campus. Here’s the video promoting elder abuse awareness!
  3. Preferred Sources of Breast Cancer Prevention Information: Will Mobile Messages work?
  • Reducing Health Disparities (Friday, 3 speakers)
  1. Transforming child, community, and school health in the U.S.-Mexico border region through participatory approaches: garden projects in schools
  2. Process data from the latino partnership: A novel approach to capture the community-level impact of latino male lay health advisors through soccer teams
  3. Transformative learning that works magic on students and the communities they serve

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the conference and all of the advice and motivation I received for my future career. I look forward to taking my CHES exam next week so that I can become a Certified Community Health Education Specialist 🙂 Below are some pictures from the conference!

Daily hours: 9×3=27

Total hours: 334





Day 41-43: (04/10, 12, & 15)

I am a little behind on my blog postings and apologize! It is the last month of the semester which means that there is a lot going on. On these three days leading up to my trip to the SOPHE Conference, I worked on a couple of different projects. I made some corrections to the nutrition & wellness brochure (see attached), created incentive cards for the health fair/fruit basket prize, made lots of emails and calls back and forth with vendors, Tara Rettig, and my supervisor, Mr. Sherrard, designed the health fair layout, printed signs for all of the tables, and other little things like that.

I’ve learned that a lot of preparation goes into a health fair and that staying organized is key. You also want to be on the same page as your committee at all times. I didn’t really have a committee but Tara and Mr. Sherrard were the ones I needed to report with on such matters.

Daily hours: 3 x 8 = 24

Total hours: 307

Nutrition brochure

Day 40: Behavioral Health


Today was fun. I went to the hospital to meet with the marketing analyst & my health fair committee/partner, Tara Rettig. We talked more into details of the health fair and she informed me on some of the responses from potential vendors. It looks like the CFL is a no and DAPA is a maybe.

At noon, we went down to internal medicine and met LT Martinez who is the Behavioral Health person in the hospital (or one of 3). I had been wanting to meet her after Tara mentioned her as a prospective vendor at our health fair. She was very nice and welcoming to talk with. We discussed my major and internship a little bit and then she told me about herself and what she does at the hospital. Basically, she does a wide range of things (which is similar to someone in community health). Her patients need to make a change whether it be quitting tobacco, healthy eating, establishing weight loss goals for obese/overweight patients, creating fitness plans, counseling, suicide prevention, etc. Her degree is in social work and some of her partners have a degree in psychology. They use a lot of motivational interviewing, which I found to be cool because I’ve learned all about that at school and with the tobacco cessation training I did.

We decided that it would be neat if she participated in the health fair at my table. Since I will be educating on nutrition, she will be there to help with desiring change and making goals. I’m excited about this but I think we need to talk more about this. Mr. Sherrard was out of the office again today, so I plan on talking with him about it as well on Wednesday.

After I left the hospital, I went to the VA clinic to drop off the brochure I made. Since Mr. Sherrard was not there, I left it with Nancy. She’ll give it to him tomorrow and that way he can give me feedback by Wednesday.

*The model below is an example of a behavioral health model. I learned about behavioral health and studied this model in my Changing Health Behaviors course at UWF last semester. Various factors can influence once behaviors (i.e. the individual, environment, community, cultural and social networks).

behavioral health

Daily hours: 8

Total hours: 283

Day 39: (04/05/13)

On Friday, I worked from home because Mr. Sherrard was out of the office. This worked out good though because I needed to finish putting together the Nutrition & Wellness brochure that I’ll be handing out at the health fair. I spent all day working on it. I also heard back from the grocery manager at the commissary. She was able to get a $50 gift card from the produce manager to go towards a fruit basket which we are going to use as the “healthy incentive” or prize at the health fair. So that was good news! I am going to meet and discuss more details with them on Wednesday next week! Click the link below to see my brochure 🙂



Daily hours: 8

Total hours: 275

Day 38: Compiling Vendors

Today I spent time working on my blog, sending some emails, and making some phone calls.

The number Mr. Sherrard gave me for DAPA was incorrect. I talked with Tara for a good hour on updates with the health fair and then we compiled our list of confirmed and possible vendors. She also had the correct phone number for DAPA and was going to contact them after our phone call. With only 11 tables, we are trying to prioritize our resources and plan wisely. We may even figure out a way for some vendors to share a table (room allowing) if they are promoting similar things. I’ve compiled a list and paired together some of the vendors below.

This is a list of confirmed vendors participating in the NHP Health Fair:

  1. Sexual Assault & Suicide Prevention with NHP (share)
  2. Tricare
  3. Food Sale (hospital’s MWR)- grilling chicken kabobs with pineapple & veggies and serving water
  4. S.H.E.P club, University of West Florida promoting club & sun protection
  5. FFSS- Child Abuse & Prevention
  6. West Florida AHEC with tobacco cessation & Escambia County Health Department- Justin Aultman, tobacco cessation (share)
  7. Massage Therapist- Molly Warren
  8. Diabetes Education, Joyce Robinson with NHP
  9. Nutrition & Wellness, me & Mr. Sherrard, Deployment Health & Wellness

This is a list of possible vendors participating in the NHP Health Fair:

  1. NEX- Andrea Beck advertising fitness gear and giveaways
  2. MWR- Michelle Hewitt, offering gym services, BMI, and gate analysis (watching you walk and fitting you for tennis shoes)
  3. VA Clinic
  4. Breast Health- Michelle Welks & Lactation Consultant with NHP (share)
  5. Behavioral Health, Kelly Martinez with NHP
  6. DAPA (Drug and Alcohol Prevention Advisor)

That’s it so far, but I think it is a great list and starting point. Many of the “possible” vendors have verbally committed but we are waiting for written confirmations. Justin Aultman & Molly Warren are bringing their own tables, so that is two we can take off of our table list!

I think it is very neat how most of these vendors I already know from shadow experience the first half of my internship. Area 6 of the Health Education Specialist handbook is all about being a “resource person” and building up on your list of contacts. I have reached out to many of these organizations and invited them to participate based on previous connections or interactions I’ve had with them. This is a great start to my career! And the only bummer about it all is that I am a military wife which means I won’t be living in Pensacola forever. Actually, I am probably moving at the end of summer. But at least I have experienced and learned the importance of building contacts and making resources within community health education. I can use this knowledge for the next place that we live 🙂

The rest of my day will be spent on creating a Nutrition Brochure to hand out at my table during the health fair.

Have a healthy day!

Daily hours: 8

Total hours: 267

Day 37: It’s April 1st!

Hello bloggers! Time flies when you’re having fun 🙂 I can’t believe it’s already April 1st and only 1 month left until graduation!!

On Monday, I met again with my supervisor to talk more details on the health fair. It’s all starting to come together! My email from Friday has gotten through to some people and I have received many confirmations and one declination. The one decline was from CDAC (Center for Drug and Alcohol Council) which is a non-profit organization within the community promoting awareness on Drugs & Alcohol. We were bummed to hear this, however there is someone with alcohol awareness on base that we looked into using. So, Mr. Sherrard gave me the point of contact from the Command DAPA (Drug and Alcohol Program Advisor). I will be calling to invite them to participate in the health fair.

After leaving the office, I went over to the Commissary and spoke with the manager who then referred me to the Grocery Manager. She suggested that we have some of the commissary’s food vendors donate gift cards to go toward a fruit basket and then offered to contact them for us. I gave her my contact information and she gave me one of her business cards and assured that I would be hearing from her soon. I also gave her the idea of putting a small pot of some kind of flowers in the center of the basket. I am excited to see what she can do!

Daily hours: 8

Total hours: 259


Intern Calendar

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