Education gives students the tools needed for a wide array of problems that may occur, yet they lack the experience to use them in a practical way.
BioScience juniors took the first two weeks of April to learn how they can apply all that they know to a common health care job, that they could potentially acquire today.
BioScience Academy Director Darcy Duffy coordinates all the shadows and helps students experience a wide range of opportunities.
“We try to offer as wide a variety as possible, a lot of them are in the healthcare industry. So we’re at VCMC, and CMH are the two big hospitals that we have. Then we [have] a variety within that whether it is shadowing a doctor or a lab technician, or someone who does imaging,” Duffy said.
There were also job shadows outside the hospital such as with a dentist, pediatrician, or marine biologist.
Although difficult to get past lots of legal red tape, Duffy finds the experience worth the trouble.
One of the most beneficial factors to students’ job shadowing is the revelation that some jobs aren’t right for students when they originally wanted pursued a career in that field.
“It has given them either the confidence to say that isn’t what I thought it was going to be” or, “it gives you that driving motivation to keep you going and doing what you need to do.”
It started with students signing up for their shadowing jobs, taking on different jobs throughout the week.
Junior Evan Somma was able to shadow with a dentist and with a doctor at urgent care, with one more shadow occurring later in the week.
He found that the technology used in health care was “fascinating,” like how doctors could use dyes with different kinds of light to show parts of the body that couldn’t be seen with the naked eye.
“As scary as it all looked, medicine itself is very doable and something that I would be able to do as a profession,” Somma said.
Junior Shelby Collet also found that her job shadow opened her eyes to new job opportunities not seen before.
Collet recently shadowed with a family medicine clinic and an oncology nurse navigator.
She found that the medical field is more broad than people might assume. For example, with a nurse. “I feel like you hear ‘nurse,’ and think that is one occupation by itself but there’s so much more to it, and the fact that you can be in different specialties for nurse. You can be a nurse navigator which I found out is completely different than being a nurse itself,” Collet explained.
Collet also had the chance to see a tumor board. “basically where all the doctors come together like pathologists and surgeons and review patients, kind of like a prognosis of their cancer treatments.”
“After yesterday I feel like I could really consider going into some form of oncology because I thought it was really cool and it was really broad and it didn’t seem like it could really ever get boring,” Collet said.
Background Photo Credit: Aysen Tan / The Foothill Dragon Press