Fifty-six junior ROTC cadets from six schools in the Jackson Public School District attended the Institute of Health Careers camp at the Hattiesburg campus of William Carey University from June 1-5.
The camp, now in its second year, is designed to help open doors for students interested in careers in health care, said Dr. Jessica Taylor, camp director and an assistant professor of physiology at Carey.
"Our goal was for the cadets to come away with a better understanding of possibilities in health care professions," said Taylor.
During the camp, cadets learned about multiple health care professions, including osteopathic medicine, exercise physiology, emergency medicine, nursing, pathology, social work, U.S. Army medical opportunities, Canadian Armed Forces medical opportunities, family medicine, pediatrics, pharmacy and veterinary medicine. Cadets also learned about values and leadership skills during an address by Maria Salter of leadership development firm Aiming Ever Higher.
Cadets participated in communications, empathy, leadership and team-building exercises and received hands-on experience through the Carey College of Osteopathic Medicine. Cadets worked in the medical college simulation lab and had practical exercises in osteopathic manipulative treatment. Carey medical students served as counselors for the camp and worked with the cadets in mentoring roles.
As part of the camp, cadets were also required to research a medically-related ethics case study and present the case study to their classmates.
"Through the camp, the cadets were able to learn new aspects of health care careers, broaden their vocabulary, make new friends and determine their career path more clearly," said Taylor. "It was a very successful camp."
The camp is the first of its kind in Mississippi. It is designed to complement the Mississippi Economic Council's Blueprint Mississippi goal of increasing educational opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields. Camp sponsors include the Army, Atmos Energy and the LeMont Scott Group.