2019 Leonard D. Schaeffer Fellow Reflection: Cece Hohman

My name is Cece Hohman, and I am a rising third-year student in the Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy. This summer, I interned as a Leonard D. Schaeffer Fellow at the Payment Policy and Financial Group (PPFMG) under the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) in Bethesda, Maryland. I was ecstatic to be chosen for this position as I have always been interested in healthcare policy and affordability. Throughout my time at PPFMG, I worked closely with the Division of Policy and Analysis (DPA), editing standard operating audit procedures, analyzing state trends on Medicaid expansion and state average premiums, and assisting in stakeholder outreach. 

My summer fellowship was both a challenging and rewarding experience. Not only was I the only intern in DPA, but this was also my first internship ever. Furthermore, I realized there was a steep learning curve when it came to data analysis and audit procedures. That said, I would not change anything about my internship experience. With the help from my mentor who worked alongside me, my supervisor, and many others within PPFMG, I was able to gain valuable skills. I vastly improved my understanding of Medicare and Medicaid, writing capabilities, data analysis skills, and knowledge about audits. These skills will be extremely helpful in the future at UVA and in my career. I also learned how to navigate the workplace and interact with a multitude of people as I had many different supervisors for the projects I completed.

My experience at PPFMG overall was unforgettable and transformative. I can honestly say it has changed my perspective on my career path and approach to my professional life. Before interning with PPFMG, I did not know if I could see a future working with healthcare policy, much less the federal government. Now, I have more clarity that both of these options are viable and I am highly interested in pursuing both of them. Additionally, the Leonard Schaeffer Summit in D.C. was helpful in reminding me to be intentional with my time at my internship. Since the Summit, I made it a priority to get to know my fellow coworkers and reach out to those in the surrounding area. In the small amount of time I had, these people have become my core network which has helped me with career exploration and expanding my network even further. 

I am very grateful for what I have learned from the Leonard D. Schaeffer Fellowship and PPFMG. I cannot wait to see what the future holds from the skills and knowledge that I gained this summer.