Aerial view of the CHLA Anderson Pavilion Building.
Serving the Community

The Push for Success through The CHAMP Program

Careers in Health and Mentorship Program (CHAMP) at Children's Hospital Los Angeles has partnered with Bank of America to be the bridge towards healthcare careers for college students that are searching, curious and ambitious. The program gives young adults who come from diverse and underrepresented areas of Los Angeles County the opportunity to discover careers in healthcare administration. Through CHAMP, students are exposed to the administrative focus of healthcare by participating in workshops, classes and hands-on experience with non-clinical mentors from several hospital departments.

Previous participants of CHAMP have expressed how life changing the program was for them.

Kevin Lewis

Kevin Lewis, project manager, jr., Pediatric Operations

”The CHAMP program opened many doors that allowed me to showcase my strengths and network with peers and mentors. The Department of Community Affairs was instrumental in guiding my journey through the program and ensuring it was a beneficial experience for all the participants in my cohort.“

George Srapyan

George Srapyan, coordinator, Prospect Management

“I received my acceptance email to Careers in Health and Mentorship Program (CHAMP) during my undergraduate commencement and while many of my peers sat in uncertainty due to the recovering recession, I sat there hopeful, optimistic, and ready for a bright future. I had recently completed an academic internship to meet my degree requirements and was expecting a similar experience, but CHAMP was different; it was organized, well coordinated, and insightful. CHAMP provided an unparalleled opportunity to advance my career and passion in healthcare. I am forever grateful to those who have mentored and supported me along my journey, and blessed to work for one of the best employers in Los Angeles.”

Ruth Orellana and Angela McKnight

Ruth Orellana, adminstrative assistant, Human Resources

"I applied to CHAMP knowing that it would be an opportunity of a lifetime. I knew the program would allow me the opportunity to gain practical experience in the healthcare field and give me the chance to learn important, necessary skills to advance in my future career.

My mentors during the CHAMP program continue to be my mentors now. As I see them grow in their professions, I hope to continue learning from them and follow in their footsteps.

I am extremely grateful for having been chosen to be a part of the program. Because of CHAMP, I was able to start my career and that is something I could never take for granted. I wish CHAMP the best of luck and hope that it can continue to provide interns the ability to gain a practical and invaluable experience in the healthcare field.”

Another perspective of the program is from the mentors who volunteer their time and expertise to help the participants find their niche and better understand health care administration and the effort that is put into running a top children’s hospital.

Angela McKnight, RightSourcing CSC, Human Resources, Ruth Orellana’s mentor

“Ruth has always been such a great team player. We were able to give her a variety of projects, and she would take them on and run with it. I was always amazed with her skill set as she seemed to be very resourceful in figuring things out and sometimes finding short cuts on how to put together different reports. I would sometimes find myself asking her, hey how did you do that?

When the internship came to an end we were all sad to see her go. She had grown so much over the summer and I feel a lot of it was because of the different workshops. She took what she had learned the month before and applied it to the internship.

We wanted to teach her as much as possible as I could see that she had a lot of potential. So when she told me that I was one of her mentors, I honestly felt honored. We saw potential in her and wanted to help her grow in any way that we could. So when we had the position open up, we knew she would be the perfect fit!"

Chantel Ponder

Chantel Ponder, health education associate II, Injury Prevention

“I feel the greatest outcome of this program is the networking and lasting relationships built throughout the course of this program. By the end of the program, the students not only have new connections with staff in the hospital but also with other mentees. Our program specifically has been able to hire on prior CHAMP mentees to work with our program as student interns. Their work ethic developed from their participation in the program is reflected by the connections they make and the work they produce.“

Natasha Lepore

Natasha Lepore, assistant professor of Research Radiology, Radiology

“These kinds of programs are essential for optimizing students' job opportunities. First, it allows them to see if they like a particular type of job before investing more strongly in a job, and secondly, it also allows them to add some work experience to their CV that will make them more valuable to employers. The market is so competitive right now that any advantage helps!”

Erika Garcia

Erika Garcia, supervisor, Commuter Services

“I love to let the students explore their interests and have them be involved with all aspects of our department and how it benefits the hospital and employees. I, then, chime in their interest to enhance their creativeness.”

CHAMP opens a bigger outlook on life and establishes a connection to the healthcare world for young people who may be confused and nervous about their future. After the participants conclude their internship, they are offered job transition and placement services, which gives them more career opportunities. CHAMP builds confidence in young college students and gives hope for the future.

For more information, visit and learn when they will be next accepting applications.