Alumni Spotlight: Former Counselors to Camp Doctors

This summer came full circle for a group of Alumni Counselors and Campers when they volunteered as camp doctors across the SeriousFun Children’s Network.  During the same week, Dr. Chris Woll, Dr. Keith Weisz, Dr. Mike Kent, and Dr. Heather Minto represented Double H Ranch across half of the SeriousFun camps within the United States. Check out this month’s Alumni Spotlight, where they let us know how the Double H Ranch affected their career path and their experiences as volunteer doctors!

campers with dr. chris woll

Chris: Pediatric Emergency Medicine Physician – Yale New Haven Hospital in New Haven, CT
(Soon to be Albany Medical Center starting in 7/1/2019)

Camp solidified the fact that I wanted to work with children. Camp also made me realize that I found wilderness medicine and acute care medicine fun and challenging, which is why I decided to study pediatric emergency medicine with a special interest in wilderness medicine.

Coming through the ranks at camp as camper, counselor and now camp doctor has given me perspective on how special and unique the experience we offer truly is. Thinking about having a child who was always told they couldn’t participate in outdoor activities and now having then able to swim in a pool or soar through the air on the ropes course or ride on a horse through the woods safely is incredible. Being a camp doctor really allowed me to reflect on how the Serious Fun network has grown with medical advances and community medical partnerships to expand the population that we can now safely serve at camp and ensure that we provide the life changing camp experience to as many children as possible.

camp doctor keith weisz

Keith: Pediatric Emergency of Medicine – Children’s Hospital Colorado in Aurora, CO

I first set foot on the grounds of Double H in the summer of 2001 and was instantly hooked.  That first summer was such an emotional roller coaster, yet at the same time, one of the most influential times of my life.  The mission of camp has continued to motivate me throughout out my career.  Double H has truly changed my life and will continue to shape my future.

Volunteering as a camp doctor at Roundup River Ranch over the past 9 years has been incredible.   I have met so many wonderful people and have shared so many incredible experiences with hundreds of campers.  Camp continues to make me better person, father, husband and physician.

dr mike kent with familyMike: Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/Bone Marrow Transplant – Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, NC

I worked as a volunteer physician at Victory Junction, here in North Carolina, this past summer during Sickle Cell Anemia week. Being a camp doctor was a special experience for me because camp was one of the main reasons I went into medicine.

I was a camper and staff member at both The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp and The Double H Ranch for a large portion of my life. And it is because of my experiences and the people that I met at Double H, as well as my personal experience that I chose to go to medical school. Being a camp doctor brings it full circle. I get to help watch and help kids that are battling various illness just be kids.  Double H is a key part of my journey from camper (patient) to doctor and one that I hope to share with many others for years to come!

Heather: dr heather minto with quiltPediatrics / Allergy Immunology – Akron Children’s Hospital in Akron OH

I am so incredibly thankful for the time that I got to spend at the Double H Ranch. I had already been leaning towards a career in medicine prior to my summers at Double H, but I knew for sure that medicine was the career for me after my summers at Double H. I think that because of my experiences working at Double H, I am more compassionate in the care that I provide to my patients and I feel more comfortable connecting with people in different ways. Working at Double H changed me profoundly and made such a positive impact on my life that I know I would not be the person I am today without those experiences. I am a firm believer in the magic of camp and I wish that everyone could experience it.  It would make the world a better place.

I had the opportunity to volunteer as a camp doc for a week at Flying Horse Farms during their pulmonary and craniofacial disorders week. It was really cool getting to be a camp doctor and to be able to combine two of my passions in life: medicine and camp. It was nice to be able to treat the campers as needed and to watch them be involved in the magic and joy of camp. I made a special connection with one camper in particular and was able to make an impact in her life.  She also made an impact in mine, which is something that I will carry with me as I continue in my medical career. I am already looking forward to going back next summer!

 

 

» The SeriousFun Children’s Network represents 30 camps and programs serving the needs of children and families around the world. Learn more about the SeriousFun Children’s Network and how you can get involved with a nearby camp!

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