I have worked at Marklund for 11 years. I feel lucky and blessed that I work for an organization that cares so much for the Marklund residents. Working at Marklund has helped put life into perspective. The Marklund clients are actually my teachers. They teach me every day what life is really about, to appreciate and cherish the small things. I have the opportunity to create some pretty amazing memories with these clients. The positive energy that is radiated from our clients and the dedicated staff is truly inspiring. I stay at Marklund because it truly is my extended family.
Jalpa Pandya, Director of Therapy, Physical Therapist
I have worked at Marklund for the last 15 years, and this place has helped define who I am over the last decade. Although my role as mother, wife, friend, daughter are critically important to who I am as well, Marklund continues to develop me into a more compassionate, goal-oriented, philanthropic person, and certainly supports my Christian values. Marklund has helped me develop my core values, work ethic and personal standard for my life. I often tell my three young children when I leave in the morning, that Marklund needs me today… Marklund is really the only place I want to go and leave my own kids each day. It is a privilege serving those who just cannot serve themselves.
Jeannine Zupo, Director of Special Events
I am very happy and honored to be working for the Marklund organization. Working for Marklund for 4 1/2 years has given me a fulfilling motivation to be there and be available to provide our clients (whom are all angels) the skilled care that they need and deserve to have. Angela Harrison, Therapy Aide/CNA
I love the warm and welcoming feel the minute you walk in the doors at Marklund; I feel that everyone, in every position – truly wants to be here and wants to do an excellent job – all for our clients! I also feel really blessed for the opportunity to use my education and talents to help others; a sense of accomplishment that I didn’t get in the for-profit world. As a Mom, I never take for granted that my children are healthy and that things can change in the blink of an eye. My job is to make sure Marklund is there for families – now and in the future, because I would want the “Marklund standard of care” for my children if they ever needed it. I truly believe that the Marklund staff gives our clients the choices and opportunities to feel a sense of independence and normalcy that we all deserve. When I see the smiles on our clients’ faces and their eyes sparkle with delight, it reaffirms what I already know – I really love my job!
Heather Graves, Chief Development Officer
I first was introduced to Marklund by best friend who is a PT at Marklund. I saw how happy and fulfilled she was going to work every day. So when a position opened up for another Physical Therapist, I applied, and it was the best move I have ever made. Working with our clients, families and other coworkers who feel the same way I do, is life changing. I only ever want to do my best because I know our guys are counting on it! Eight years later, I am happy and fulfilled going to work every day!
Gunjan Patel, Administrator, Marklund Philip Center/Director of Therapy
One of the stories I tell during my tour of the Mill Creek Campus involves our Aqua Therapy program. When I was helping with this program, I had the great pleasure of trying to get Clint into the swimming pool. The first day of his swimming schedule, I sat for 30 minutes on the side of the pool trying to convince him to go in (as we all know, Clint isn’t too fond of water). I was failing in my efforts to get him to go in the conventional way, so I decide to use my imagination. I became a horse and Clint became a cowboy (everyone who knows Clint knows he loves his cowboy boots and cowboy hat). My back was the saddle, and my shoulders were the reins. I stood in the water, and had Clint slide off of the side of the pool onto the saddle (my back) and hold onto the reins, (my shoulders). Sound like we are good to go? Think again, Clint was screaming to get him out!!! I said to him, “Clint, Clint, do you trust me, will I let anything happen to you”? He said, “I trust you Cathy” and he calmed down. I told him that all he was going to do today was ride around on the horse and let the horse enjoy the water. Over the next 3 weeks of Clint’s Aqua Therapy classes, he overcame his fears and was holding onto the railing while walking independently around the pool.
This year, I asked Heather D to do the welcome speech for our Volunteer Recognition Dinner. When I asked her, her original answer went like this. She screamed, rose a little in her chair, throw her arms out straight and was not smiling. So I said, “I guess that is a big NO”. She indicated she was too afraid to get up in front of that big of a crowd. So… I have to admit, I used a little reverse psychology on her. I said, “Huh, I don’t know who I will get to do it this year. Ruthanne did it last year, and she did a wonderful job, so who could I ask to do it this year”. I also said “I would be with whoever was going to do the speech”. Then I asked her to suggest someone. She gave me one of her looks, and then she looked down at her tray. I looked at her tray and started naming all of the people on her tray. She wasn’t answering, so I said “are you looking at the picture of your augmentive device? She said, “Yes”. I then asked her, “Have you changed your mind about doing the speech? She said “yes”. The night of the dinner, Heather was a little nervous. When asked, “do you want something to eat or drink”, she said, “no, I will wait until after my speech”. I also asked if she wanted to practice her part. She again said “no”. She had heard the story of Ruthanne’s augmentive device going dead last year; I guess she did not want to take any chances! When Heather did her speech, she had to hit on 5 different squares to say the whole speech. I am happy to say “She did it without making one mistake or hesitation in hitting the right squares”!! She was smiling ear to ear when the crowd gave her a round of applause. It was an honor for me to be a part of her special moment!
I love being a part of all the memorable miracle moments at Marklund! When one of our friends is able to overcome a fear or do something no one thought they would ever be able to do, we all become a part of that miracle! Miracles do happen; they happen at Marklund because we believe in what we do!
Cathy Nikrandt, Volunteer Manager
“All of the best friends I could possibly have live here. Every day, I’m surrounded by the people I care for the most.” – Cathy
“It’s uncommon to come across what Marklund offers us as employees. Every one of us belongs to this family. We’re always working together towards the common goal of making a difference in our residents’ lives.” – Natalie
“Working with these clients is something I want to do. Everything at Marklund makes me happy.” – Emily
“I see how happiness shines through Marklund’s clients. What I do impacts their lives. At the end of the day, I know that what I did made a difference in their lives. I love being a part of that.” – Crystal
“Every single thing I do at Marklund makes a difference in the lives of Marklund’s residents. I couldn’t ask for a job to be more rewarding.” – Vicki
“I love working with the clients and making them happy. What I do helps them reach their potential.” – Maria