A Rush Manager’s ‘Opportunity of a Lifetime’

LaToya Artis, project manager, Office of Transformation, Rush University Medical CenterBy LaToya C. Artis

When I was a Rush University Health Systems Management student, I sometimes wondered if all of the group projects I worked on would ever pay off. Well, now I know, as they are essentially a part of my everyday life.

In my role as project manager with the Office of Transformation, I eat, sleep and breathe group projects collaborating with Rush staff to transition, renovate and relocate their departments as part of the Rush Transformation. The work is very interesting, though challenging at times, and always rewarding at the completion.

Most recently, I have had the pleasure of working with a number of Rush departments that relocated to the Orthopedic Building. Each department transition involves a great deal of planning and collaboration among the project managers, architects, contractors, moving companies, and most importantly the departments and support services. The process begins with a series of planning sessions.

This planning occurs over several months or sometimes years depending on the scope of the project or size of the department. In the end, the staff receives a new space that is more efficient and technologically advanced to provide patient care — and patients visit a welcoming, state-of-the-art facility with modern medical features, designed to enhance their overall experience and provide them with a sense of comfort.

Helping to facilitate these departmental transitions has provided a trial run of what’s to come with the opening of the new East Tower hospital building in 2012. These last few years have given me a lot of hands-on experience and served as a very rewarding part of my career.

The East Tower completion, activation and opening will be an opportunity of a lifetime for an early careerist such as myself. I look forward to coming up with more innovative ways to collaborate with other Rush departments, while maintaining accountability, respect, and excellence throughout every future transition.

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