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How My Mom’s MS Journey Inspires My Work

By Jake Simpson
May 2, 2022

As a college student, finding an internship that can give you real world experience for your career down the line is important. But in the last 3 months, I have found that experience becomes so much more valuable when the work you’re doing truly means something to you.

My mom was diagnosed with MS almost 10 years ago, so I have a very personal connection to the National MS Society. My family has participated in several Walk MS events, as well as MuckFest MS. MS has impacted our family in many ways, but above all, it has allowed us to come together and support my mom.

My mom is a superhero to me. She has always taken incredible care of me and my 2 brothers, as well as our friends. She’s fed them, housed them, chauffeured them and treated them like they were her kids, too.

I like to say that my mom is everybody’s mom. She always helped out at school, took us to practices and games, and still had time to make sure we all sat down for dinner together growing up.

When I saw an opportunity for an internship at the Society, I was beyond excited and knew I had to jump at it. Working with the Walk MS staff has allowed me to see both sides of these events and having that personal connection to MS with my mom’s diagnosis means I know exactly how much the work I have been doing means to everybody impacted by this disease.

Working at the Society has never been short of inspirational and exciting. Using this lens of my own personal experience, I have been able to grow professionally and learn so much about what I want to do after college.

I’ve been able to try new things, and because I’m passionate about the work I’m doing, I get to learn so much more than I would at a place I didn’t really care about. The work I do here feels so natural, because learning with and exploring MS and the people diagnosed with it is something I’ve been doing since I was a kid.

I love hearing people’s stories and getting to know who they are, why they are involved with the Society, and how I can help them. It makes me feel like I’m helping my mom, too.

Editor’s Note: Find resources for children with a parent living with MS on the National MS Society website.

Jake Simpson

Jake is a communications and development intern with Walk MS living in Illinois who has been working with the MS Society since February 2022. He is currently attending the University of Illinois at Chicago to study marketing and communications.  

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