One of my proudest professional accomplishments was becoming a certified health care volunteer administrator through NCHVP. I collected examples of my work in a portfolio to present to the committee. I also spent time reading manuals about the ins and outs of volunteer management to prepare for the dreaded exam. The Management Development class was my study guide and the committee members my mentors.
After I received my letter stating I was now a CHVM and could use those credentials behind my name, I had the opportunity to share my portfolio with my division Vice President and explain just what we do as volunteer administrators and why it is so important. At the time I was a volunteer coordinator. When the director retired, my being certified gave the Executive Team confidence to promote me into the leadership role of Director.
The most important thing the certification process taught me was to think about why we do what we do. Not to accept that this is the way it has always been done and will always be done. Health care is constantly changing and we must stay up to date. Certification challenges us to articulate what we do, to grow in our profession, and to constantly learn and improve our processes.
I encourage you to sit for certification, you will be glad you did. If you are interested, please let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Certification Committee is in the process of updating the application and it will be distributed shortly. The deadline to receive completed applications is November 1.