“Flash Medical Center” at Kent State Ashtabula Showcases Healthcare Careers to High School Students
What does a day in the life of a healthcare professional look like? High school students interested in a healthcare career got to find out recently when Kent State University at Ashtabula hosted a hands-on simulation experience for them. The experience also gave the students a chance to learn about the allied health programs offered at the campus.
Students came from high schools and vocational schools in Ashtabula and Lake counties. There were 22 students in attendance and more than 10 on the waitlist.
Robert S. Morrison Hall was transformed into the “Flash Medical Center,” a daylong healthcare simulation. Julie Mirabell, director of the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program at Kent State Ashtabula, says student participants arrived at the center as “new employees” for a daylong new employee orientation session. The orientation was interrupted by a simulated medical emergency when someone fell from a ladder in the hallway.
The simulation ended with the patient becoming suddenly nonresponsive during his occupational therapy session, leaving the students with a “medial cliffhanger.” Students were then invited to participate in an essay contest about what happened to the patient and what treatments they recommended. The three winning students will receive scholarships to Kent State Ashtabula for $1,500, $750 and $500.
“This was a very interactive, hands-on day where students were called upon to assist in the care of the patient,” Ms. Mirabell says. “Along the way, important overarching themes were stressed, such as the importance of communication, teamwork/interdisciplinary collaboration, and compliance with patient privacy and confidentiality.”
The students experienced the many different aspects of patient care, starting with providing care in a rapid response situation, and moving through radiology for X-rays, the surgical unit for a nursing assessment, physical and respiratory therapy and pain management, the ICU and occupational therapy.
“It was extremely valuable for the students to be able to see what a day in the life of a healthcare professional actually looked like in a hospital setting,” says Amanda Dolan, director of enrollment management and student services. “A few students told us that they were deciding between a few different professions and this experience helped them make a decision about their careers.”
A similar event will be hosted this spring for students who want to experience the simulation.
For more information, visit www.kent.edu/ashtabula/flashmed.