Community collaboration provides “Healthcareers” event for high school students

Pictured left to right: Chris Gilmer, WVU Potomac State College Interim President, Mark Boucot, President and CEO Potomac Valley Hospital, and Troy Ravenscroft, Superintendent of Mineral County Schools

WVU Medicine Potomac Valley Hospital, WVU Potomac State College, and the Mineral County Vocational Technical Center have partnered to provide a “Healthcareers” event for Mineral County high school students.

“I want to acknowledge the teams that have worked so hard with WVU Potomac State College to make this happen – the team at Potomac Valley Hospital, and the team at Mineral County Schools,” WVU Potomac State College Interim President Chris Gilmer said. “This is an example of the best of collaborations. It’s also an excellent example to our students exemplifying the sense of community we have in our small town, while providing them with important information on future education and careers that are available to them right here in Mineral County.”

The “Healthcareers” event was created to provide high school students, interested in the healthcare field, a chance to learn more about the wide variety of jobs available in the field.

“Our future leaders are faced with a challenging task, one that many of us have faced, to figure out what career path is right for them, from a position of passion and purpose” says PVH Nurse Educator Alyssa Cessna. Alyssa was instrumental in developing the “Healthcareers” event. “When the opportunity arose to help make this decision easier for students today, I knew that I, along with my entire team at Potomac Valley Hospital, would have to put our whole hearts into this effort. We wanted to provide the students of Mineral County with an experience that would allow them to explore the many sides of healthcare.”

The overall mission of the “Healthcareers” event was to share the joy and gratification of working in the healthcare field to anyone who would be currently interested in the field, or even entertaining options in healthcare. This mission developed into a highly educational environment for students to explore the many aspects of healthcare by participating in engaging activities allowing for research in areas of interest. Students were also provided an avenue of networking with healthcare and educational system leaders.

“It’s a special opportunity we have, as an entire community, to help the students realize and achieve their dreams,” says Mark Boucot, President and CEO of PVH. “We are excited to help raise up the next generation of healthcare workers.  This is a special field, where our young people can really make a difference.  We want to help the students achieve their highest potential as they strive to help others and give back to the community.”

Presenters were available to speak to the students regarding all aspects of the healthcare field, from non-clinical roles, such as Environmental Services, to clinical roles, such as Respiratory Therapy, Medical Imaging Technology, Laboratory Science, Operative Services, and Nursing, among many others. Each service was provided the opportunity to facilitate a realistic, in-depth consideration of their specialty. Students were also provided with information for educational opportunities available at Potomac State College as well as the Mineral County Vocational Technical Center.

Cessna recalls, “More than anything else, we wanted to share our passion for what we do in healthcare and shine a light on the opportunities that exist right here in Mineral County. I feel confident that we did just that.”

The first “Healthcareers” event was held in the middle of October and is scheduled to become a biannual event.