Students attending from San Juan High include Delaney Nielson, Elijah Palmer, Nikki Posey, Stacey Manheimer, Shantel Benally, Teanna Billie, Pamela Smith, Antonio Cly, Iceon Dale, RaShe Morris and Nicole Posey.
Students from Whitehorse High include Nizhoni Spencer and Celeste Lansing.
Attending from Monument Valley High are Lynette Jones and from Navajo Mountain High School, Nicole Edgewater. They, along with 90 other high school students, explored the health care industry through three days of hands-on experiences and learning opportunities.
Camp participants were divided into groups and rotated among 16 workshops. Some workshops featured health career skills where participants learned to suture, cast arms, check blood sugar levels, take a blood pressure, intubate and maintain an airway, give injections, provide first-aid, use and read an EKG machine, and more.
In science labs, students looked at blood smears through microscopes, learned how diseases are spread, measured their lung capacities, made their own teeth impressions, dissected sheep eyes and cow hearts, learned how to investigate a crime scene and learned about pharmacy by making their own chapstick.
Careers that were featured include Respiratory Therapy, Nursing, Physical Therapy, Physician Assistant, Medical Technologist, Physician, Veterinarian, Forensic Science, EMT, Exercise Science, Pharmacist, Nurse Practitioner and Dentist.
In the SUU Challenge Course, students learned team-work and leadership skills. A dance and dinner at a local park were more highlights of the camp.
Participants were housed at The Eccles Living Learning Center at SUU and were able to experience what college life would be like at Southern Utah University. The San Juan School District provided a bus to transport the students to the camp.
Because there is such a need for health career workers in rural Utah, the goal for this camp is simple. “This camp is specifically designed to give students from rural areas opportunities to learn about health care careers in a hands-on way that is not always available to them.
The hope is that by introducing students to health care from rural areas, they will pursue a health care career and return to a rural area,” said Carrie Torgersen, camp coordinator.
After graduating from high school, students interested in health careers have the opportunity enroll in the Center’s Rural Health Scholars Program.
The SUU Rural Health Scholars Program helps students become successful applicants to medical, dental, pharmacy, PA and other graduate level health professions programs.
Student applications are strengthened through a regimen of classes, seminars, community service, job shadowing, research and advisement. This year, 52 SUU students have been accepted into graduate level health programs, and out of 25 students applying to medical schools, 24 have been accepted.
For information about Utah Center for Rural Health programs, contact Dennis Moser or Rita Osborn at 435-865-8520 or visit www.suu.edu/ruralhealth.