Staff Spotlight: Kristin Hendrickson
Job Title: Research Nurse Clinician
Hometown: Chicago, IL
What motivated you to get into the medical field, specifically neuro research?
At a basic level, I am motivated by a strong desire to help others when and where it is needed most. Research is exciting because while it often takes time, in the end it improves patients’ lives. Neurological research, especially focusing on the brain, is so interesting and exciting because it goes to the essence of who we are as individuals.
What is it like to know that you’re playing an integral role in identifying new therapies that will contribute to a cure for brain cancer?
It’s very gratifying to know that I am playing a role in this important endeavor. Brain cancer research deserves the same intense scientific efforts as all other types of cancer and I am excited to be a part of this program.
Have you ever been personally impacted by brain cancer?
The nephew of a lifelong family friend was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme at the young age of 23. This devastating diagnosis and lack of treatment options after recurrence led me to Ivy Brain Tumor Center.
How do you keep a patient’s (and their caregiver’s) spirit alive during such an emotional, life-threatening time?
The most important thing that I can do for a patient and their family during any difficult time is to listen and be present for them. I provide a neutral sounding board and offer stories of hope to help keep patients and their families positive during difficult times.
What keeps you motivated when dealing with such a complex disease?
Professional motivation at Ivy is easy. The energy, enthusiasm and expertise of the team along with plans for even more growth in the future, keeps me motivated.