At 15-years-old, Ingrid Ledbetter knew she wanted to make a difference in the lives of others and started her journey through the junior volunteer program at Valley Baptist Medical Center in Harlingen, Texas. Eight years later, Ledbetter returned to the hospital with her nursing credentials, ready to start her career.
“I would encourage any young teens to take advantage of the volunteer program because it exposes you to the hospital environment and helps you navigate the field of interest you may have,” said Ledbetter. “My experience here made me want to come back and do even more to help patients and deliver a higher level of care.”
Ledbetter, now a nurse in the Emergency Department, knew from the time she volunteered with Valley Baptist that she wanted to go into the healthcare field.
“One of the most fulfilling parts of working with our junior volunteers is when we see them return to us ready to take on the healthcare profession,” said Katie McCarty, Director of Volunteer Services for Valley Baptist Health System. “Ingrid is a wonderful example of the impact our program can have on our students.”
The junior volunteer programs across the enterprise provide young teens with hands-on experience and a preview of a career in healthcare.
“I couldn’t be happier with the opportunity I was provided as a student,” said Ledbetter. “The advice and teachings have been invaluable to me, and I am proud to now be part of the Valley Baptist team as a nurse.”