CHIP Intern Victoria Strutz: Public Health Intern at the Langlade County Health Department

By: Alissa Siegenthaler, AHEC statewide communications assistant

ANTIGO – Victoria (Tori) Strutz is majoring in Kinesiology with a Business Management minor at UW-Oshkosh and, through CHIP, was the public health intern for Langlade County in summer 2013.

Strutz was given the ability to work with a wide breadth of programs and areas in the community. Her two main focuses were “Summer of Fun” articles for the local newspaper and the “Lighten up Langlade” program.

Strutz wrote one article each month for the Antigo weekly paper. Her theme was “Summer of Fun” and Strutz wrote about the many benefits of physical activity for kids and parents. Articles included fun physical activity ideas for the whole family, statistics on obesity, information about hydration and sunscreen, and inexpensive ways to be active. “Lighten up Langlade” is a team weight loss challenge put on by Langlade Hospital that lasts 11 weeks and aims to get people active and eating better. The team with the biggest weight loss percentage wins and is awarded a prize.

Strutz helped the “Lighten Up Langlade” program by:

  • Putting together healthy recipes
  • Creating a handout with health tips and advice
  • Attending meetings to discuss the program’s end

“Langlade County Health Department’s first experience with an AHEC intern was excellent. Tori’s personality and prior education fit perfectly with our staff and the projects that we had her work on in the Department. Her vibrant energy was infectious to our staff and the partner agencies she worked with, especially the youth that increased their physical activity thanks to Tori’s instruction! Tori will be an asset to future teams and workplaces that she has the chance to influence as an intern and as a employee.”
– Karen Hegranes, Public Health Nursing Supervisor and Tori’s CHIP mentor

Strutz was also able to work in many other areas of Langlade County:

Boys and Girls Club

Strutz partnered with a nutritionist from UW-Extension every week to educate the children about physical activity and how they can incorporate activity into their everyday lives. This included doing an activity and talking about heart rate, finding one’s pulse, how to do a warm up and stretching.

Health department brochure updating

Strutz Re-designed a fluoride brochure to make it more
current and up-to-date.

Healthy Ways Walk

This walk is done every year by the Langlade County Healt Department. Many vendors come to educate people about health and wellness. Strutz worked with the general population ranging from kids to older adults, to help educate them about incorporating health and wellness into their everyday lives.

“Overall I had a great experience! I really enjoyed the County and its beauty along with all the people I’ve met and worked with. The staff I worked with was great along with my fantastic mentors, Ron and Karen, who were very helpful along the way. I met many people and had a great time learning more about Public Health through multiple experiences and talking with many people. This great internship really helped me decide if I want to go into the field, and gave me many great opportunities and experiences I will never forget. Thank you to AHEC and to everyone who helped make this a memorable 8 weeks!” – Tori Strutz