Health careers I

CLINTON – Mrs. Shayna Somers, a Health Careers Educational Consultant with South Central Wisconsin Area Health Education Careers (AHEC), visited the health classes at Clinton High School and the Careers classes at Clinton Middle School to educate students about the many diverse careers available to students within the health care industry.“When students think of health careers, they don’t think much past being a doctor or a nurse, when there are really so many more options available to them,” Somers explained. “That’s why I love coming into the classroom. I can expand their thinking. Also, they don’t necessarily have to work with people. There are health related jobs in IT, equipment design and repairs, lab work, engineering, and more. These are all part of the health careers field.”

Clinton High School students were divided into stations within their classroom. At each station, they were to complete a different activity that gave insight as to the types of conditions students could help with if they chose a career in that area.

At the dietician station, students learned how to thicken liquid to help people suffering from Dysphagia. People suffering from this condition have poor muscle control in their throats. Thickening the liquid helps it to go down more slowly.

Other stations for the high school students included a physical therapy lab where students learned ways to help improve balance, and a forensics science lab on fingerprinting. One station involved vision health, and taught students about the various impairments, diseases, and disorders of the eyes.

At the clinical lab station, students had to match different diseases with what they looked like through a microscope. The dental lab station was especially fun for students. They had to trace a star by looking at it in a mirror image, to mimic the way in which dentists view and work on people’s teeth. They discovered this was quite a challenge.

When Somers visited Clinton Middle School, she gave a presentation about various health careers and incorporated an activity to help students understand which careers could be obtained through a technical school and which required a college degree of four or more years. Students also completed a medical condition bingo game, in which they marked all health issues they personally had experienced, such as a broken arm or leg, surgery, braces, riding in an ambulance, visiting the emergency room, and others.

Finally, students learned about the personal protective equipment those in the health career industry must use when working with people. One student from each class volunteered to demonstrate the proper way to put on the clothing and the proper way to take it off when finished. Students also learned the proper way to clean up a blood spill and dispose of the towels used.

Somers visits the high school once each semester, and the middle school once each year. She looks forward to these visits, and enjoys sharing her knowledge with the students. Anyone wanting more information about AHEC or health related careers can visit their website at