Twenty-four high school students from the Alleghany Highlands area are participating in the Advanced Health Care Pathway Program. This is a new program to the Commonwealth that gives students a closer look at potential medical careers.
Ginni Phillips, Alleghany Highlands Health Care Advancement Grant coordinator says, “We are hearing from health care providers across the state. These healthcare providers for example are dentists, physicians, pharmacists, physician assistants. We are hearing from some counselors. We are including public health in that as well.”
The program is in partnership with Randolph-Macon College. In total, there are six sessions where students get to ask questions and find out what it takes to be successful in their careers.
Phillips says, “We would like for them to create a vision and some sort of plan as to how they hope and plan to pursue these careers after graduation.”
Orchid and Tempblum Tucker are siblings and students at Alleghany-Highlands Public School. They both want to be doctors. They said it has been enlightening to hear from people who are from their area and working in the medical field.
Orchid Tucker says, “Just seeing these kinds of people talk to us who have similar experiences, helps us gauge where we are and how we can go in the same physician pathway.”
Alleghany Highlands Public Schools conducted a survey with students about their careers. About 33% of students indicated they were considering becoming occupational therapists. Other popular career options included physician assistant and dentist.
Reniayh Cheatwood, a junior at AHPS, says, “There are many people who are either set on a specific career at a young age or you can end up switching. This program helps with seeing how many different fields there really are.”
Ariana Bolden a Senior at AHPS says, “It does give you a bigger vision of what is really out there in the health field because normally you just know about nurses and doctors, but there are so many other health care professions out there that you really don’t hear about.”
The program will end with a visit to Randolph-Macon’s campus. This allows students to immerse themselves in the career they are interested in.
Source: WSLS News 10