Health Care Camp Provides Hands-On Career Exploration
Even in a challenging economy, health care is an area of constant need for trained and skilled employees. This summer twenty-three 6th and 7th grade Bruce-Guadalupe Community School (BGCS) students had the chance to see first hand the careers of a nurse, an Ultrasound or X-ray technician, a Dietician, or an Occupational Therapist, among many more. Through the generous partnership with Columbia College of Nursing and Mount Mary College, students had a two-day experience of college life.
They also toured Mount Mary College, Columbia College of Nursing, Columbia St. Mary's Hospital, and the most exciting part, stayed overnight in the college dorms. These opportunities to shadow current students were coordinated and chaperoned by the staff of the Columbia College of Nursing Health Center at UCC.
Other activities included lectures from faculty at both colleges, lab experiments, and behind the scenes tours of an X-ray lab, the emergency room, and an ambulance. Students also participated in several fun games and activities intended to teach them skills needed in health care, such as empathy exercise where students were fitted with equipment to affect their movement, sight or smell and then asked to perform regular activities. A panel discussion from current nursing students allowed the younger students to ask detailed questions about the day to day experience of working toward these careers.
The goal was to help the students really get the feel for what these careers entail and to help them better picture themselves in such a career in the future. In fact, all students received a picture of themselves in front of an ambulance dressed in scrubs as a memento and reminder that with hard work they can achieve the dream of working in health care one day!