Blog: What Floats Your Boat?

Posted On 10/17/2013

Recently while promoting the Research Advocacy Program to a local organization with a short presentation, I was asked this question….What floats your boat? What gives you the drive to do what you do? Without hesitation and attempting to hold back tears (I was trying to be professional!), I answered the gentleman with my heartfelt reason of why I do what I do. A little over ten years ago I was offered my first job out of college in clinical research and became instantly fascinated with the research industry. I was drawn to the discoveries being made in medicine and a piece of me was ecstatic that I was actually a part of the process for a particular drug to become marketed by the FDA. Then a door opened for me to work in translational research with discovery trials; collecting fresh tissue and blood samples. This was a new concept in research for me, but I loved it and I developed an entire new passion in research! Bridging the gap between scientists and the medical clinic became very rewarding and fulfilling, all the while satisfying a fascinating amusement of mine. (Amusement being, able to work with anything gross and bloody… I’m all for it!) Then the advocacy program started; I became connected with different patients and volunteers all with a story, some with a connection, and all with a face to the word Cancer. That word, cancer, of course I knew was terrible and I was diligently working with researchers to find better options and prove theories and I was pleased with that. However, that word (cancer) didn’t affect me solely until here recently when witnessing firsthand the damage that it can do. The perspective to my career had sifted and changed from that of satisfaction to drive and purpose. So what floats my boat? Why do I do what I do? Easy….the peoples, the faces, the patients that fight the battle with cancer daily directly or indirectly. My job, which may be so minute in the vast world of cancer research, has determination behind it now. I’m fighting with those that are battling cancer to find a cure, to find better treatments and to promote the hope in research that is underway in centers all over the nation and most importantly here locally. I do what I do for the generations to come and I enjoy sharing that through the advocacy program.

So, what floats your boat? Why do you volunteer as an advocate for medical research? What has your experience been like thus far? Recently I received some wonderful and compelling responses from our advocates along this same topic for the purpose of generating an impact statement for our program. If you'd like to participate in our advocate program, please send us a message via our contact page, or give us a call at 765-446-5165.