Monday, September 8, 2014
LATHAM PROFILES: Meaghan Hengst
Latham Profiles: Meaghan Hengst
Children's Residential Counselor
What do you enjoy most about your job?
The things I enjoy most about my job is that I am able to go to work knowing that I will be amazed every day and that I’m making a difference in the lives of the residents here at Latham Centers. I also have an amazing group of coworkers who offer great support to help keep the students and Latham at its best.
Describe a few of your responsibilities and how you spend much of your time.
Some of the responsibilities that I have here at Latham are that I help to teach the students proper hygiene, eating etiquette, and social skills that they can use and apply when they leave Latham. I plan activities that bring the students into the community. I also help the students to identify something that is a challenge for them and figure out ways to handle this challenge appropriately.
What skills are most important for professionals who work with individuals with PWS?
The skills that are most important for professionals who work with individuals with PWS are the qualities that one needs to possess even before starting to work with children with special needs which are patience, compassion and adaptability. Another huge skill to have is to be able to let go of power struggles.
What are the most important lessons you attempt to teach new staff?
The students each have their own history and therefore come to Latham for various reasons. Get to know each student by what the student says and also by their individual behavior plan. These students come here for consistency and support so it is our job as a whole Latham community to provide that consistency.
What do you love about working with individuals with PWS?
I admire their courage in dealing with this syndrome. To have the constant effects of this illness and yet be able to laugh, smile, form friendships, and have fun is amazing.
Has this job taught you anything about yourself?
This job has taught me that I have far more patience than I ever believed I had!
How do you spend your time when you’re not working at Latham?
I enjoy going to the beach, reading, listening to live music, and spending time with friends and family.
What advice would you give to someone contemplating a career at Latham Centers?
The advice I would give someone who is considering a career at Latham is to be energetic, have an open mind, and be ready for many challenges that are, in the end, extremely rewarding. Also, one can review the website because it offers a great deal of information that will help you decide if Latham is the right fit for them.
Interested in joining our team? See our latest job postings HERE!