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HOSA students talk of medical field and personal experiences

Students from the Crenshaw County Health Occupations Students of  America (HOSA) and their advisor Becky Cornelius, health science teacher for Crenshaw County Schools,  paid a visit to the Luverne Rotary Club on Monday to share their experiences with HOSA.

Students from the Crenshaw County Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) and their advisor Becky Cornelius, health science teacher for Crenshaw County Schools, paid a visit to the Luverne Rotary Club on Monday to share their experiences with HOSA.

During a recent meeting of the Luverne Rotary Club, the Crenshaw County Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) and their advisor Becky Cornelius, health science instructor for Crenshaw County Schools, paid a visit to tell Rotarians about the multiple facets of HOSA.

“The curriculum that I pretty much teach in my program is designed to help students who are future health professionals or who may aspire to become that,” Cornelius said.

“So, we’re teaching things like skills they will need to become successful at that in the classroom. Internship is a huge part of our program, and these students have pretty much just finished up their fall internships.”

The Crenshaw County HOSA group currently has 123 members, which includes students from Luverne High School, Brantley High School and Highland Home School. During their time in the program, students learn about the different medical fields, medical abbreviations and terminology and also have the chance to work firsthand with professionals during their internships.

Cornelius noted that leadership skills are another important aspect of the health professional world, and this is one reason why she encouraged her students to practice their public speaking abilities at Rotary Club.

“Public speaking and just being able to communicate in general is a big part of being a health care worker,” she said.

Along with the everyday task of classes and assignments, the HOSA group is also engaged in multiple areas of community service, such as Kidchecks, Breast Cancer Awareness events, Toys for Tots, blood drives and more.

“We try to support as many school and community activities as we can, because we are a service organization,” Cornelius said.

“Our theme for this year is ‘Leadership, Service, Engagement.’ It is pretty important that we keep these students engaged on a daily basis.”

Jace Baines, junior at LHS, has been part of HOSA since the ninth grade, and since starting in the program he has discovered his true calling for the medical field. He currently serves as the secretary in HOSA.

“HOSA has benefitted us in many ways. We’ve actually been exposed to certain things within the healthcare field, especially with internships, and it allows us to know what we want to do with our futures and careers,” he said.

“I started off in the program not knowing what I wanted to do in my future, and now I want to become a medical examiner and pursue medical school.”

Other members of the group shared their experiences with projects such as Kidcheck, which enables students to receive free health screenings. These screenings were performed at all three Crenshaw County Schools and screened approximately 1,100 students this year.

Nick Baugh, a junior from LHS, had the chance to help operate the screenings a LHS and HHS.

“Not all students these days can afford frequent checkups at the doctor, and this Kidcheck system might not be as thorough as one from a doctor’s office, but they can help recognize abnormalities that need to be checked by a doctor,” Baugh said.

“It’s always something that needs to be done, because there’s no telling what could be going on with somebody, and if they don’t check it, it might be too late.”

Cornelius says she is proud of the work and effort these students have put into learning more about the medical field, and she is excited to see where the future takes them.

“As a HOSA advisor, probably the best part of this job is being able to see the students be able to show what they’ve learned,” Cornelius said.

“As I witnessed them teach other people CPR, I know they’ve got it and they can do it.”