Finding the American dream at Encompass Health: International employees share their stories

Professional Development

Whether you were born in the U.S. or not, the idea of chasing the American dream is a concept that rings true for many. It is no surprise that thousands of people every year decide to uproot their lives in their home country and move to the United States.

For two employees, Jervy Magat and Ishtar Estuita, they chose to chase their American dreams by working at Encompass Health.

Magat is a registered nurse at Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Rock Hill, and Estuita is a physical therapist at Encompass Health – Home Health in Andover, Massachusetts. Both are from the Phillippines and knew from a young age that one day they wanted to work in America.

“Working in the U.S.A. was always my childhood dream,” Magat said, “It is the land of milk and honey.” Estuita saw working in the U.S. as a way to expand her professional experience while also furthering her education as a PT.

However, moving across the world and gaining citizenship to a new country is not an easy task. From becoming a licensed clinician in the U.S. to being granted an immigrant VISA, it is a lengthy and detailed process, which can be difficult to navigate alone. Encompass Health sees the benefit of hiring employees from other countries to support the needs of our hospitals and home health branches, while also integrating diverse cultures and viewpoints into our staff.

This is where our skilled recruiters come in to aide the process to make the transition as seamless as possible. “The entire process was smooth. Good things really come to those who wait,” Magat said.

Moving to a new country can be a bit daunting, but both Magat and Estuita felt supported by their new Company. “I had to be courageous because starting life in a foreign country by yourself is a terrifying thing to do,” said Estuita. 

Not only is it our recruiters’ jobs to help these new employees get to the U.S., but once they are here, local staff do their best to make international employees feel welcome.

“Moving to the U.S.A. was quite challenging. With the help of the Encompass Health staff, from hospital CEO to CNO, I was able to adapt and fit in,” said Magat. “They helped me look for a good place, told me where to buy necessities and how to get a driver’s license.”

With every new job comes the training that is involved in learning a new role, and for international employees who may not be familiar with the culture norms in the U.S., training is especially important.

“I was trained by various therapists including both PT and OT preceptors who let me observe how they did different types of visits with patients before I started doing them on my own,” said Estuita.

She shared that her favorite part of the training was that she did not feel rushed and was able to learn at her own pace. “I really felt ready after my training,” she stated.   

Despite all the challenges they faced along the way, both Magat and Estuita agreed that making the move with Encompass Health has been well worth it. Magat explained that his favorite part of the job is when he gets to see patients feeling empowered and independent again.

“The most fulfilling part is when they appreciate all the things you have done for them,” he said. Estuita has fallen in love with the relationships she has formed with her patients and communities. “I love that everyone truly attempts to do better every single day,” she said.

Are you or someone you know someone interested in becoming a clinician in the U.S. but don’t know where to start?Either way, we invite you to learn more by visiting our website for more information.