Clinical Center News
Summer 2018

NIH Clinical Center celebrates support provided by hundreds of volunteers

During National Volunteer Week, April 15-21, the NIH Clinical Center honored 125 volunteers for the support they provide 28 hospital departments and countless patients. The Volunteer Program is led by the Office of Hospitality and Volunteer Services. Two volunteers who are making a difference are Chaoyang Wang and Nathan Wright. Read a bit about them below – and learn how you can volunteer.

Chaoyang Wang

NIH Clinical Center volunteer Chaoyang Wang
NIH Clinical Center volunteer Chaoyang Wang.
 

Wang is in his third year at the University of Maryland studying Physiology and Neurobiology with a minor in Piano Performance. He is applying to medical schools.

His family background influenced his decision to volunteer at the NIH and shaped his dream of becoming a surgeon. His father is a biostatistician at a drug company and his mother is an OB GYN nurse at a local health facility. When Wang was on summer break during high school, he began volunteering as a student researcher at NIH pancreatic cancer and adult bone marrow stem cells research laboratories.

Since 2017, when he discovered the volunteer services program at the NIH Clinical Center, he has been volunteering on the 9th floor Outpatient Medical Surgical Specialties Unit one day per week. Wang assists patients with medical appointments.

"Creating a welcoming environment for patients dealing with health issues is important on the unit," said Wang. He also volunteers in the Radiology Department one day per week. "I work closely with the Radiology technicians and the nurses and have observed how interdisciplinary healthcare is at the NIH."

Nathan Wright 

NIH Clinical Center volunteer Nathan Wright
NIH Clinical Center volunteer Nathan Wright.
 

Volunteer Nathan Wright, a former Marine Corps marathon runner who uses the marathon motto "Run with Purpose, Finish with Pride," came to NIH after a life changing event. Wright, a retired NASA aerospace engineer who worked on the Hubble Space Telescope, hoped to participate in a NIH clinical research trial and find answers regarding the two strokes that he experiences. Unfortunately, the clinical trials available at that time were not a good fit for him personally, but he remained impressed by the parallel connection between the brightest minds in medical research at NIH and the brightest minds in space exploration at NASA. So he wanted to find another way to connect with NIH.

Helping others interested Wright, so in 2017, he began volunteering at the Clinical Center, offering coffee and snacks to patients as they wait for their appointment.

"Patients brighten up when I serve them coffee. Serving others is a selfless act, whether you're serving for your country in the military or serving patients at the NIH Clinical Center," he said.

Stories
Senior leaders at NIH cut a ribbon opening two hospice suites at the Clinical Center
Laptop with stethoscope nearby
Patient Photography Studio
Dr. Francis Collins, director of the NIH sties in a chair to the left. Barbra Streisand holds a microphone and sits in a chair to the right – speaks to the audience
Dr. James Gilman stands with Alba C. Murphy as they smile and hold a certificate
A paper cutout of a hand shape with a stick on the end. Text on the paper says I [heart] clean hands
Patient with Degos disease addresses symposium attendees
CDC and NIH representatives stand in a special isolation patient room at the NIH Clinical Center
Eight young men and women line up holding graduation certificates in Lipsett Auditorium
A four panel exhibit with photos, text and artifacts on NIH medical pioneers Christian Anfinsen and Michael Potter
NIH Clinical Center volunteer Chaoyang Wang
Woman with scientific cap on her head plays a touch game
Doctors at NIH speak in a lecture hall during Nurses Week
NIH Clinical Center doctor receives award
Children participate in Take Your Child to Work Day Hematology Lab
Leslie Wehrlen holds a plaque.
Sixteen women, graduates of the program and departmental leaders, gather for a photo
Pius Aiyelawo swearing into the Senior Executive Service with Dr. Lawrence Tabak
Jackson Taylor (right) and his donor Sean McLaughlin (left)
Dr. Thomas Burklow
Two care providers look at a computer
Child reading a book
NIH employee, Ricky Day, trys the prototype device
U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams tours Clinical Center with CC CEO Dr. James K. Gilman
First Lady Melania Trump gets together with five children to pose for a picture
Patient and doctor
Harold Varmus, Robert Frasca, Mark Hatfield and John Gallin at the groundbreaking of the hospital's new addition
Black and White photo of the first meeting of the National Advisory Eye Council (13 men) gathering on steps
Jim Gilman at Town Hall in Masur Auditorium
Dr. John I. Gallin cuts the ribbon with Heidi Grolig and Jerry Sachs.
People line up at the new marketplace Starbucks café