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MHA Health Careers Center Holds First Annual Health Careers Awareness Camp



JACKSON (June 27, 2005) – The Mississippi Hospital Association’s Health Careers Center hosted its first annual Health Careers Awareness Camp on June 13-17th at the Jackson Medical Mall. The Health Careers Awareness Camp was a five-day summer enrichment program designed to provide high school junior and senior students with an educational experience that builds awareness of and interest in health careers through a partnership of health care employers, health care practitioners and educators. 

Eighteen students throughout the Jackson Metropolitan Area attended this first annual event including: Betty Alexander of Pearl High School, Portia Boyd of Murrah High School, Tabitha Carpenter of Lanier High School, Ebony Caston of Northwest Rankin High School, Maira Gonzalez of Ridgeland High School, Norris Edney of Clinton High School, Joy Green of Jim Hill High School, Tia Jenkins of Northwest Rankin High School, Courtney McLaurin of Clinton High School, Nicole Lowe of Murrah High School, Emily Partridge of Clinton High School, Rachel Riley of Clinton High School, Camille Sanders of Ridgeland High School, Chrystal Rogers of Canton High School, Kasey Thompson of Hinds Community College Raymond Campus Career Center, Ericka Upton of Madison Central High School, Marla Washington of Murrah High School, and A’Leta Washington of Bailey Magnet High School for Health-Related Professions.

Each day’s activities included speakers and presenters from different fields of employment within the health care environment. The camp covered careers ranging from nurses and physicians to dentists, pharmacists, and more.  This experience provided students with an opportunity to gain awareness in career fields that they might otherwise be unknowledgeable. The camp itinerary for Tuesday and Wednesday included a chance for the students to visit hospitals in the Jackson area. Each student was able to spend 2 hours a day in the hospital environment where they shadowed health care employees. The hospitals that participated included: Baptist Memorial Hospital, Jackson Hinds Comprehensive Health Center, River Oaks Hospital, St. Dominic- Jackson Memorial Hospital, and University of Mississippi Medical Center. In conclusion to the week’s activities, students were divided into groups to prepare and present oral presentations to an audience of students, Health Careers Center staff, family members, and a panel of judges.

The Health Careers Awareness Camp is receiving a large amount of attention and has proved to be a huge success within the first year. The Health Careers Center plans to expand this concept even further by developing the camp as a model health careers awareness program that can be replicated and expanded nationwide.

If you are interested in learning more about The Health Careers Awareness Camp or the MHA Health Careers Center, please contact Curnis Upkins, Jr. at 368-3303 or visit our website at www.mshealthcareers.com.

CONTACT: Melissa Brewer
Communications Coordinator
MHA Health Career Center
Phone: (601) 368-3235

About MHA Health Career Center:

The MHA Health Careers Center was created by the Mississippi Hospital Association in response to the shortages in nursing and allied health careers. These shortages are threatening the delivery of timely and quality healthcare in Mississippi and must be addressed. The Center provides resources for individuals interested in health careers and to hospitals for employee recruitment and retention.

The MHA Health Careers Center is focused on being the primary resource for students, educators, job seekers and healthcare employers interested in health care information and occupations in Mississippi. By forming partnerships with educational institutions, healthcare employers and healthcare professional organizations, we are working to ensure that the medical needs of all Mississippians are cared for by a sufficient number of well-trained professionals.


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