Member Spotlight: Whitney Harper

Whitney Harper

Whitney Harper
Program Operations Specialist
University of Washington School of Medicine

How long have you been a member of AAIM?
I have been a member of AAIM since February 2017.

What is your favorite part of your job?
My favorite part of my job is that I get to create intentional, individualized schedules for each of our residents that will support their career/life ambitions in addition to the required components of internal medicine residency training. I really love the advising part of my job, when I am fortunate enough to have 1:1 meetings with residents to better understand them and what kind of doctor they want to be at the end of their residency and beyond.

How has the AAIM membership been of value to you and your career?
AAIM has provided me the opportunity to ease into networking as an introverted person. I am a member of the APDIM Program Administrators Member Services Committee and has been great to be involved with AAIM and to slowly meet my colleagues across the country. I look forward to serving as chair of this committee, particularly in getting more involved in the PA mentoring program.

What or Who inspires you and why?
My grandmother is a huge inspiration to me. She just turned 99 and is still living alone and has a great social life (pre-COVID, anyways). She goes to weekly writing classes and French classes at the local senior center. She was widowed with 6 kids under the age of 10 and managed to raise them while still being her own person. She is extremely gracious and kind to everyone she encounters. I am nothing like her, but wish I could be her!

What advice would you give to those who wish to pursue a career in this industry?
Honestly I can only speak to those who are non-physicians. The advice I would give is to learn as much as possible about what the daily life of who you are supporting looks like. Ask if you can shadow someone in their clinical setting. Read research abstracts. Listen to their highlights and struggles to provide primary care to patients in continuity clinic or care for patients on the wards. If you don’t know what their work looks like you won’t be able to fully understand what they need from administrative support.

What is your favorite book or movie?
My favorite book is Little Women, and favorite movie is The Departed.