New Ventures in Health
by: Debbie Ramey, Director of Health Careers and Minority Affairs, EAHEC
Table of Contents
Looking Toward the Future
Adventure in Excellence
Rural Health Scholars
A Dose of Leadership Training
About the ECU Generalist
ECU Generalist Archive
"It is our hope
and return to
Debbie Ramey, EAHEC
A group of our region's top minority high school students were participants in this year's
"Ventures Into Health Careers Institute," a summer residential camp on the East Carolina
University campus. Twenty rising freshmen and sophomores from ten different counties received
first-hand experience in what it's like to be a doctor, a nurse or even a physical therapist.
Originating in 1994, the Ventures into Health Careers Institute is sponsored by the Eastern Area Health Education Center (EAHEC). In eastern North Carolina, where there is a significant minority population, the need for minority health practitioners was the catalyst for EAHEC to begin the institute.
Through a competive application process, 20 students were selected from 165 applicants for the 1997 camp. All were considered to be among the brightest in their class and nearly all have decided on a health care career. The ventures program is open to Black, Hispanic, and Native American students.
The students attend classes in math and science, reading and writing, academic skills building, and professional development during their two week stay on campus. The purpose of these classes is to help learners see the connection between what they're doing in the
and the impact it
has on their future as health professionals. In addition to class work, the ninth
and tenth grade students
participate in clinical rotations at Pitt County Memorial Hospital where
they get a behind-the-scenes look at health care providers hard at work. If they understand what it
takes to be a health professional, then they can make good decisions in high school about their
Upon completion of the summer enrichment course a minimum of four follow-up sessions are sponsored by Eastern AHEC with support from the Generalist Physician Program at ECU. These sessions build upon the enrichment experiences of the summer "Ventures" and continue to address critical academic preparation skills throughout their high school experience. At present four groups of students have attended Ventures.
Students are taught by well trained, dedicated, and enthusiastic minority and non-minority faculty who maintain high expectations of these learners while adjusting to the individual's own academic needs. The faculty encourage career aspirations, and have demonstrated an outstanding ability to work with these young people. Ventures provides for the development of a peer support group for these students that has been shown effective in improving student achievement and persistence in the mathematical and scientific fields leading to health careers.
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