Moving Right Along!

By Jennifer Cherak

I never thought that while receiving mental health services I could also be employed through the same system to make a difference. UPMC/WPIC gave me the opportunity I needed to start a new chapter in my life.

I have been receiving treatment for my ongoing depression for 18 years but never knew it was possible to be a patient and an employee at the same time. Almost two years ago, I was offered a position with the Youth and Family Training Institute at their office in Monroeville. Even though I don't directly work with other patients at this position, it has encouraged me to be a leader in my treatment and in my life. I not only received a job but an unexplainable amount of hope that I needed to overcome the obstacles I faced in my own treatment. As a UPMC/WPIC employee, I am respected as a person, valued as a team member, and accepted for who I am. UPMC/WPIC has also opened the door and provided other opportunities for people in similar situations to feel they are not just a patient. Thanks to the ongoing support from my coworkers and UPMC/WPIC, I am now closer to achieving my recovery goals than any other time in my life.