Taylor Mentzer (right) is completing a for-credit internship in orthopedic surgery with Integrated Surgical Specialists in Wyomissing. Her profile was written by Avery Burke, a communications intern for the Exeter Township School District.
Taylor Mentzer is a senior at Exeter Township Senior High School and is on the varsity soccer team and the girls' softball team. She also is a member of National Honor Society, Mini-THON and Ski Club. Taylor will be attending University of North Carolina in Greensboro to major in kinesiology and play Division I soccer. She is interning at the Integrated Surgical Specialists with orthopedic surgery.
Q: Why did you choose that internship program?
A: I chose this internship program because of my interest in the medical field. Initially, I wanted to major in nursing, but since then I have changed my major to kinesiology. Kinesiology is basically exercise science.
Q: What are some of the major projects you have worked on so far?
A: I observe a variety of orthopedic surgeries. I have watched hip surgeries due to the hip joint being worn down and damaged. I have watched ACL surgeries where autographs from the hamstring are used to repair the torn ACL of the patient. I have watched a bunch of fractures, from wrists, to legs, to arms, where X-rays are used to insert pins, screws, and plates. I have watched hand surgeries, such as carpal tunnel surgeries where the surgeon cuts through the ligament to relieve the pressure on the nerve. I have also watched shoulder scope surgeries, where an arthroscope is inserted into the shoulder through an incision which is connected to a video monitor. The surgeon repairs the tissues and joints within the shoulder. In addition, I have also observed a lab on a cadaver where the surgeon is learning a new type of fusion surgery.
Q: What have you learned so far during your internship?
A: I have learned a lot throughout my time at my internship so far. I have learned important medical terms, medical equipment, operating room procedures, pre- and post-operation procedures, and insurance policies.
Q: What has been your favorite and most challenging part of this internship?
A: My favorite part of my internship has been the variety of surgeries. My favorite surgeries would be the fractures. There are a lot of elements that go into these with all the pins, screws, and plates being used. Since my internship is the same time as my softball season, time management has been a challenge. I need to make sure to get enough hours each week while juggling my practice and game schedule at the same time. Also, due to legalities, I cannot do certain things, which makes most of my work observational rather than hands-on.
Q: What career do you hope to have one day? Is this something you have always seen yourself doing?
A: I hope to have a career as either a physical therapist, occupational therapist, or an athletic trainer after college. I have always been interested in the medical field in some aspect, so yes, I could always see myself doing this. I also enjoy helping others and in this career path, I am combining the interest in the medical field and the enjoyment for helping others.
Q: How will this internship help you in the future?
A: My internship gives me first hand experience on the operations that I could one day be helping people recover from. It adds information that will ultimately help patients that I will work with. Having this experience also builds my resume and validates my desire to continue in the medical field.