UCLA School of Public Health Field Studies Program

Community Health Sciences

Field Placement: Los Angeles County Department of Health Services – Alcohol Drug Program Administration
Alhambra, CA
Shreya Shah
Student Name: Bettsy Santana
Year: 2005

From June 21, 2005 to September 9, 2005, I worked as an Administrative Aide for the Los Angeles County Department of Alcohol Drug Program Administration (ADPA). I worked in Adolescent Treatment and Recover Programs (ATRP) which was part of the planning division. The Adolescent Recovery Program consists of five fulltime staff members, from various fields including social work and public administration. The department is located in the city of Alhambra.

The staff and ATRP are relatively new and still in the formative stage. The program has 14 contracted substance abuse and recovery providers that provide services throughout the county of Los Angeles. The program is funded through federal block grant funds and state grants. ADPA is responsible for seeing that the providers follow the county’s policy and procedures. In addition, ADPA is responsible for assisting providers with technical support.

My internship consisted of various projects. I was asked to provide reports on policies being implemented in the county and on the effects it would have on our department. Unfortunately, my biggest project did not come to fruition. I was in charge of framing and reporting on an evaluation of a substance abuse program for youth on probation, but the data was not available on time. However, I was able to attend various training regarding confidentiality and consent and addiction and participated in educating fellow staff members on these subjects. Furthermore, I was also able to work on developing consent and confidentiality standards for the department.

Overall, the internship was a great way to learn about the government and my role as a public health employee. I learned about the different jobs that public health professional do. I also learned about the culture and politics of working for the county. In addition, the internship helped develop my professional writing skills. More importantly, it has also helped me decide on my future career goals and direction. I learned about what type of work I enjoy performing and what task I find unpleasant.


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