GME staff from left Wright Hamburg Hess Campe Vanitvelt 2021 orientation
Julie Campe

Julie Campe


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Where are you from originally?

Clarkston, Mich. I was born and raised in Michigan.

Educational background

  • Bachelor of arts: Oakland University, Rochester, Mich.
  • English major, business minor
  • Attended Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Mich.
  • Also took public health courses from Michigan State University
  • Certification as clinical research coordinator by the Association of Clinical Research Professionals

What prepared you for your current position?

My first career was in journalism, and I worked as a business writer, sportswriter and general news reporter for two years before becoming the managing editor of a weekly newspaper for five years. That role included the then-new technology of computer page design (rather than the old way of physically printing, cutting, and pasting paper) - plus graphic design and photography. Later, I was a feature and newswriter for The Flint Journal, as well as state and national publications. At the same time, I was consulting for various organizations, to help them develop messaging targeted to particular audiences, so I developed relational databases to help organize and use that contact information most effectively.

The writing, editing, and technical skills were a natural fit when I transitioned to academic research at Hurley, where I continued to develop relational databses and used statistical software packages to analyze the data. The page design from my prior publication work came in handy when creating reports, writing and editing research papers, and teaching residents and faculty the basics of research, data management and analysis, and writing/presenting.

Soon, we academic research staff at Hurley took on clinical research responsibilities, so I completed a two-year clinical research-coordinator certification and conducted industry-sponsored clinical research trials, mostly in geriatrics, internal medicine and pediatrics, where I worked closely with many of our current faculty members. For each study, I functioned as both a project manager and as clinical research staff, handling regulatory issues, recruitment advertising, phone scripts & screening, psychometric assessments, lab processing & shipping, consent of patients, reporting on adverse events, etc. I'm forever grateful to one of my colleagues, Roslyn McQueen PhD, for showing me how to create a "feathered edge" blood smear when making slides.

Those experiences led to greater involvement in writing standing operating procedures (or standard practices, in Hurley lingo), analyzing and streamlining processes, and contributing to improvement projects.

Sprinkled throughout this was the development of curriculum (eg, the Hurley Trauma Research Fellow's curriculum), evaluation methods, and always some form of education and training.

What do you like most about working with residents, fellows and other learners?

I most enjoy learning about their experiences and goals and helping to make their learning more efficient but also meaningful. Every person has a story, and it's an honor when they share it. Residency training can be really difficult. So the goal is to help them gain skills to survive and thrive, not only for their time at Hurley but also for a lifetime in their profession.


My husband, Chris, and I have two daughters, one dog and one cat. My siblings are spread out across the country, but we group-text, Zoom-call, and get together (in nonpandemic times) whenever we can. Michigan is often the go-to reunion spot because it's just so breathtakingly beautiful, in the summer especially. We typically rent a big house or two on Lake Michigan and swim, kayak, and eat a lot.

When you're not working, what do you do for fun?

I love gardening and fighting my nemesis, the Japanese beatle, not to mention the various fungi that try to take over my cucumbers and tomatoes (and the gigantic cottonwood trees that drop fast-growing, cottony seeds all over the vegetable garden). For any other gardeners, I recommend an organic copper fungicidal spray every 7-10 days or so - if fungi appear in your garden.

I also love going on short (or long) adventures with my family, meeting for hiking trails, garden strolls, films, theater or food in cities and towns throughout Michigan. Finally, I may be addicted to the New York Times crossword puzzle.

What do you love about Hurley?

I'll never forget my orientation to Hurley many years ago. One speaker talked about the lucky privilege we all have to work at a place whose mission is to never turn anyone away for lack of pay, based on James Hurley's directives when he donated the land for the hospital >100 years ago. The presenter choked up when he said that. But he was right. It is a privilege - and a responsibility. When we keep that in mind, it's easy to stay motivated to do things as efficiently as possible, to not waste money or time, to make things easier for the patient and their families at Hurley. When we see health care through their eyes, we can see that, nationally, there is great room for improvement. But there's room for improvement in stand-alone hospitals like Hurley, too. And it's a privilege to do our small parts in that.

What inspires you?

People who overcome great obstacles yet remain humble, recognizing that others may have taken the same steps that they did and worked just as hard but may not have fared as well. Sometimes it's just chance - or the grace of God - that helps you achieve your goals. Along that line, I'm also inspired by people who help others whenever and however they can.

Favorite writer?

My husband and I love Shakespeare and even named one of our daughters after one of the bard's female characters. But I return often to Albert Camus, who influenced me in the merits of humanism - to be kind, even in the face of certain (or uncertain) death or destruction. It's still a leap of faith, but it can be an important guiding first principle.

Top 3 favorite things about Michigan

  • Michigan's forests and hiking trails, boardwalks and beaches. I used to also appreciate the snowy ski hills and cross-country skiing trails, but I'm not as fond of winter anymore!
  • Lake Michigan and the other Great Lakes, the many inland lakes, rivers, streams, wetlands, waterfalls - there's always some refreshing place to go to rejuvenate and appreciate nature
  • Interesting cultural sites (eg, Detroit Institute of Arts) and entrepreneurial people making cities and towns super fun to visit
    1. Try Ann Arbor, Midtown (Detroit), Rochester, Fenton, Chelsea, Traverse City, Sutton's Bay, Leeland, downtown Flint ... there are so many more!

Flint Faves

  • The Flint Institute of Arts (and its film series) - exhibits change all the time, so there's always a reason to go back. Try Free Satudays.
  • Flint Farmers' Market (especially the eateries, such as Steady Eddy's and Beirut Restaurant). They use fresh produce from the Farmers' Market, and Steady Eddy's is open even on some nonmarket days.
  • Flint Crepe Company - the menu changes all the time, depending on what's in season. Look for asparagus crepes in the spring and pumpkin in the fall. My kids like the nutella or the raspberry crepes year-round.
  • Applewood at Second and Saginaw (the Mott Culinary Arts Institute's student restaurant) - they're closed in the summer, though. But you can try gourmet food at normal lunch prices, if you're adventurous.
  • Atwood Stadium and the sporting events there (just across the road from Hurley). Keep an eye out for Hurley day at the Flint City Bucks (soccer) games and wear your Hurley merch!

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