How has Meridian changed since you first started?
I began working with Meridian in 1998 until 2003. When I returned in 2014, they had installed computers. While I can certainly complain about the drawbacks of EMRs, I don’t miss handwriting my notes one bit!
Over the years, Meridian’s mission has remained consistent in helping people with mental and substance abuse disorders overcome the psychosocial obstacles that have prevented them from fully participating independently in the community.
Who has had the most impact on you and why?
Betty Strayer, former VP of Lake City’s operations, inspired me when I first started working for Meridian. She was energetic with seasoned knowledge and had a very cool level-headedness that comes from having a lot of experience. She gave me opportunities to use skills that many at my level of experience didn’t usually have. I am thankful that she took that chance on me. I hope I display those same qualities as I continue to progress in my work life.
What has been the most rewarding part of your experience with Meridian?
Meridian has given me the opportunity to work in a variety of capacities. I’ve used my clinical assessment skills to identify problems and evaluate potential clinical solutions in each role. That is, however, a nerdy type of reward.
It is difficult to pinpoint a single experience as “the most” rewarding. It’s always gratifying to see your work positively affect someone’s life. Meridian’s platform frequently gives us, employees, such rewarding opportunities.
For instance, a dying patient told me how much he genuinely appreciated our sessions. It was heartfelt and a little sad. Our sessions were often challenging and pointed, but he said they made him feel intelligent, valued, and human. I am likely the last friend he spoke with, so I am pleased to know that I provided him with some comfort and dignity.
Any Final Thoughts?
I hope not – I still feel like I’ve got some years left in me!