PRC students to head to health conference
Published 7:00 am Saturday, April 11, 2015
This summer, four students from Pearl River Central High School will represent their school, county and state at the Health Occupation Students of America’s 38th annual National Leadership Conference in Anaheim, California.
The team of seniors, Parker Ball, Austin Burks, Madelyn Matute´ and Thomas Lee, placed first in the state during HOSA’s competition in Jackson on March 18-20.
According to www.hosa.org, HOSA is a national student organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Health Science Education Division of ACTE. HOSA’s mission includes promoting career opportunities in the health care industry and enhancing the delivery of quality health care to all people.
Jennifer Spence is the team’s advisor and the school’s health and science teacher.
She is also a registered nurse.
“These young adults are our future,” Spence said. “Each one has been accepted into a major university and wants to enter medical school.”
Lee is president of PRC’s HOSA chapter and wants to become an infectious disease specialist or researcher. He said being an HOSA member has broadened his horizons.
“The members of this group are very passionate about what they do,” Lee said.
During the HOSA state competition, teams are first administered a written quiz, Lee said. After the written portion, the top eight teams proceed to the quiz bowl. PRC’s teams placed first in the written quiz portion.
The teams are placed at two tables during the quiz bowl and are given four buzzers, Lee said. The proctor asks medical and health related questions that the team must answer. The top three teams from the state’s quiz bowl will compete in Anaheim, California on June 24 to 27.
Burks, who is the PRC HOSA vice-president plans to enter the medical field as a CRNA nurse anesthetist.
“Being a member of this group has given me the knowledge that I will need for my future college courses,” Burks said. “I’m glad to be a part of this team. It has taught me that teamwork is important.”
Matute´said HOSA helped her decide her future. To practice for quiz bowls, she performs online research and spends part of her free time practicing with teammates.
“I plan to attend medical school and become a surgeon,” Matute´ said. “I’ve always felt it’s ironic how doctors have to dissect people in order to save them. We also observe medical staff at Highland Community Hospital.”
The group is seeking sponsors in order to raise funds to pay for their trip to Anaheim, Spence said.
Throughout the year, the group hosted fundraisers to pay for district and state competitions, she said.
“These kids deserve to go,” Spence said. “They have worked hard. They are not only representing PRC High School and Pearl River County, but the entire state of Mississippi. It speaks very highly of our academic programs here at PRC.”
Anyone interested in donating to the PRC HOSA team may contact Spence at 601-798-1986, extension 1218.