Caring for caregivers

Caring for caregivers

Photo by: Michael Montero, University Communications
By Life@TheU

Photo by: Michael Montero, University Communications

Caring for caregivers

By Life@TheU
UHealth welcomes Dorinda Carolina as the new associate vice president for human resources.

When Dorinda Carolina decided to leave Philadelphia, PA, in January 2019 to join the University of Miami Health System, she traveled with just a few suitcases and her mind set on her next career step. As the associate vice president for human resources at UHealth, Carolina’s vision for her role is intentional and steadfast—to be a servant leader and caretaker to health system employees.

“One of my initial goals is to personally meet as many employees as possible,” said Carolina. “Our UHealth providers deliver preeminent patient care each day and part of my role is to take care of them.”

Originally from Panama, Carolina’s family emigrated to the U.S. when she was 15. She grew up watching her mother, a dedicated nursing assistant, provide care for others and learned the powerful impact of the health care industry. Her sister too was called to the healing field and became a registered nurse. Their passion to serve patients inspired Carolina to begin a career in health care where she could ultimately invest in the wholeness of the patient care experience.

“Employees who are engaged and recognized for their hard work will deliver that same energy and level of care to their patients,” she said.

With over 25 years of leadership experience, Carolina has cultivated a dynamic career launching and guiding human resource teams to advance their organizations’ missions and goals. She brings extensive experience in strategic development and in aligning talent with organizational needs.

As a newcomer to Miami, Carolina approached the city with open arms and was greeted in her new position with the same openness. “Everyone at UHealth has welcomed me with such kindness and warmth, and I have witnessed this care-giving culture first-hand. I have seen patient access personnel escort patients off of the elevators and staff members willingly provide step-by-step directions around campus; it is evident that our employees are engaged with their community,” Carolina said.

Dorinda Carolina, associate vice president for human resources at UHealth
Dorinda Carolina spends time on campus meeting employees.

Although she is still getting acquainted with her new role, Carolina is aware that there are challenges when working within a health system as large as UHealth. She shared that transition and turnover within leadership can be challenging for all employees but that retaining and recruiting talent at all levels is essential for continued success.

She pointed to the important role long-service employees play at our organization.

“The employees who have served the organization for many years are the root or the foundation to our success. All changes stem from the root and their contributions are just as valuable as new employees joining our team,” Carolina said.

As chief human resources officer for the UHealth system, Carolina will lead overall talent and workforce strategies, projects and initiatives impacting more than 11,000 employees. She is a part of the University’s human resources team, and reports to Edward Abraham, M.D., executive vice president for health affairs and CEO of UHealth, and Mary Harper Hagan, interim vice president for human resources at the University of Miami.

Carolina, who is fluent in Spanish, describes herself as a change agent, focused on fostering a workplace culture that values and engages employees, and exemplifies transparent communication.

Her drive and enormous talents are welcome additions to the UM team.

You can find Carolina on campus meeting employees or making an occasional stop at the weekly farmers market. Have a question for Dorinda? Email her directly at dcarolina@miami.edu.