Ben Turnbull, a Digital Technology Leadership Program recruit at GE Aviation, is not actually working at GE. Instead, he’s clocking time with a new ServiceCorps program, putting his GE employment on hold for an entire year.
Ben is one of just four recruits participating in GE’s inaugural program, deferring his start date by a year and working instead as a ServiceCorps Fellow, assigned to add value to non-profit organizations.
Ben accepted his job offer at GE Aviation, following a successful internship and University of Virginia graduation, and expected to be working by mid-summer at the business on Digital and IT programs. Instead, the opportunity to participate in a year of service flipped Ben’s focus from engines & avionics at GE Aviation’s Cincinnati headquarters to comprehensive health services for underserved populations across Massachusetts.
For Ben, the decision to delay his GE experience has provided new learnings and insights.
“When I joined the program, I wasn’t sure about the difference between Medicare and Medicaid. And I didn’t know physicians are called ‘providers’ in this environment,” he said of his early days at Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers, where he works full-time as a ServiceCorps Fellow. “I’ve learned a lot about health care and health services, and the mission-driven purpose to better serve people in the community.”
With a major in Systems and Information Engineering, Ben said he watched other students in the field gravitate toward consulting jobs after graduation. He “wanted to break the mold,” and decided to pursue work instead at GE Aviation, after hearing a UVA alum describe his successful company career.
GE’s ServiceCorps opportunity was even more unique.
“It’s one of the coolest things, seeing the link to GE,” Ben said, “and recognizing that GE is playing a pivotal role in the community.”
For the staff at Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers (“the League”), Ben’s experience, expertise and enthusiasm is a welcome addition.
The non-profit, statewide association serves the state’s 49 community health center organizations, with more than 285 sites. The League’s support includes technical assistance, including analysis of state and federal health regulatory and policy issues, information technology development, and increased capacity for using data.
For Ben, the League’s mission provides opportunities to lean-out processes, saving time and money; conduct social data studies to determine how care is provided to various populations; and hands-on service at the Lynn Community Health Center, just down the street from GE Aviation’s plant on Western Ave.
“He’s an amazing person,” said Diana Erani, director, Health Center Controlled Network. “Ben’s got a great, positive attitude. He’s always available, and respectful, and he looks to provide value-add wherever he can.”
GE’s ServiceCorps opportunity is open to new recruits in the company’s early career leadership programs across a variety of functions, including Digital Technology, Engineering, Finance, Human Resources, Manufacturing & Operations, and Sales & Marketing.