Hi everyone! My name is Evan DeTurk and I’m a rising junior at Princeton University studying Molecular Biology on a pre-medical track. Working with the Sextant Foundation as a Reimagining Volunteer this summer has been a formative experience that’s allowed me to explore my interests in healthcare, nonprofit organizations and sustainability.
I've been involved in a variety of projects this summer, including moving the insights of past Reimagining Workshops forward and working on various aspects of Sextant’s development as a nonprofit. I’m excited to apply my new knowledge (particularly the Human Centered Design process) to my academic work and explore the new interests Sextant has led me to pick up. Additionally, I’m thankful for the level of self-direction this position has afforded me. While I came in admittedly a bit intimidated about the level of autonomy I’d have, I’ve become much more confident in my ability to assess and address my own needs and take a project from start to finish.
What has been your most exciting moment working as a Reimagining Volunteer?
Publishing the Reimagining the NICU lookbook on the Sextant website has to be my most exciting moment thus far. After spending so much time writing up the workshop’s insights, prototyping the lookbook in PowerPoint and putting the information into Wix, it’s really exciting to see the (almost) finished product.
How do you see your work being relevant to your academic goals?
My Sextant work has helped me further diversify the ways in which I view health and how I see myself making an impact during my career. It’s put some of my academic work into context and familiarizing myself with Reimagining Workshops has helped me understand more ways that doctors can contribute to health beyond just working with patients.
Do you feel connected to other volunteers and Sextant staff?
Absolutely! Working closely with Charlie, Shannon, Troy and others this summer has been a major highlight of the Sextant experience. The team huddles, social hours and co-working sessions have been very helpful in keeping me on track with my work, collaborating for better results and just interacting with great people.
What concepts do you see as being the driving force of Sextant’s work?
To me, Sextant is driven by a desire to positively impact human health and a desire to look holistically to find effective solutions. For example, surgeries and medicine are absolutely vital to hospitals but they can’t be maximally effective if the facility has energy issues, which is where our projects come in. The Reimagining Workshops fit under the same umbrella - coming up with innovative solutions to healthcare issues without mental constraints and then figuring out how to deal with implementation needs and guidelines.
Share with us a hobby you’ve developed recently.
Over the past six months or so I’ve gotten back into reading both novels and comics consistently! Unfortunately, my rate of finding new things I want to read far outstrips the pace at which I can actually read them...