Name – Gacia Tachejian- Social Work Intern

Current role at Harboring Hearts :  As a second year Management Fellow graduate student at Columbia University, my role at Harboring Hearts is to assess the needs of patients and their families Also, as Harboring Hearts grows I will be working on the administrative and developmental tasks of the grant program. I work collaboratively with the CEO and one of the board members to ensure the success of the grant program and help as many families in need as possible.

How and why did you get involved with Harboring Hearts? I was introduced to Harboring Hearts through Columbia University Social Enterprise Administration Graduate Program. I was looking to complete my second year internship at a startup nonprofit agency that provides assistance for people of all ethnicities and age groups. I also wanted to work for an organization that provides assistance for those who are suffering from health disparities. It seemed like Harboring Hearts was the perfect fit.

I wanted to be a part of an organization that provides this type of support for personal reasons as well. Within the past 10 years I have lost three family
members to cancer and heart disease. I have learned first-hand the emotional and financial struggle that patients and their families go through. Programs such as what Harboring Hearts offers can have a significant impact on patients and their families. My personal experience made me want to get involved in the development of a program such as this.

Who or what have been your greatest inspirations in your life?

My greatest inspiration in my life has been my father. He lived a life of constant struggle, moved from country to country as an orphan and still has managed to be the hardest working person I know. With no real father figure in his life, he has parented both my brother and I in an incredible way. He has been our constant support and has never given up on our dreams even when we doubted ourselves. He is my greatest inspiration.

What are your career and life goals?

My career goal is to be running an organization that makes a positive impact on the lives of children and adolescents. I have a passion for children, their innocence, and their potential. I want to always have direct contact with the people or population that I am working with. As a social worker, it is important for me to not only be administratively running a program, but also have hands-on clinical work with patients.  A life goal is to be passionate about my work and have a balanced life that has room for work and play. 

Gacia’s Favorites

  • Favorite Food? – Sushi         
  • Favorite Ways to Relax? – Swimming, Yoga, and a nice bubble bath!
  • Favorite Music? Beyonce
  • Favorite Travel Destination? Paris and the south of France
  • Favorite Book? Random Family
  • Favorite Movie? The Notebook