High Schoolers Explore Health Care

February 29, 2012

Students view pig lungs at the 2012

Career Exploration Day

More than 800 high school students will gather at Mercy Health Center Friday, March 2 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., to explore health care careers. The popular Mercy Health Career Exploration Day, now in its 10th year, gives area students a one-stop-shop opportunity to learn about a variety of jobs in health care.

“Students often think a career in health care means being a doctor or a nurse, but there are so many opportunities in health care today,” said Jill Wimmer, Mercy recruitment manager. “This event isn’t a lecture or some boring intro to health care; this is an exciting hands-on experience for students to see what they would get to do as a health care professional. We don’t just tell them about it, they get to see it up close, feel it and be a part of it.”

Throughout the day-long event, Mercy stages “mock codes.” During these 15-minute drill demonstrations, health care professionals rush to the aid of a dummy to perform the same life-saving techniques that they would perform in a real event. Students have the opportunity to participate in these drills, giving them insight to the fast paced environment of emergency health care.

In addition to the mock codes, students can talk one-on-one with a radiology tech, pharmacist, nurse, respiratory therapist, nutritionist, lab technician and many more professionals. Students will be able to view actual radiology and hospital equipment, educational videos and organ models, so they come away with experiences a slideshow can’t provide.

“We had the opportunity to feel a pig’s lung, practice giving a shot and even take part in a mock Code Blue,” said Mustang’s Caitlin Prinzo, a Bishop McGuinness Catholic High School student who previously attended career day. “It was a real eye-opener to learn all the things you can do.”

Participating high schools and groups include: Bethany, Bishop McGuinness, Canadian Valley Technology Center, Chandler, Deer Creek, Edmond Memorial, El Reno, Francis Tuttle Technology Center, Mount Saint Mary, Putnam City North, John Marshall and Yukon.

“We want students to learn they have lots of choices,” said Bill Peterson, Mercy executive director of human resources. “Every year students find the experience invaluable because they can see firsthand how numerous the opportunities are in health care. The possibilities really are endless.”

Information on Mercy careers is available at www.mercy.net/oklahomacityok/careers

Mercy is the eighth largest Catholic health care system in the U.S. and serves more than 3 million people annually. Mercy includes 31 hospitals, more than 200 outpatient facilities, 38,000 co-workers and 1,500 integrated physicians in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma. Mercy also has outreach ministries in Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. For more about Mercy, visit www.mercy.net.

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