Future nurses, doctors and even veterinarians are establishing their foundations early at Charles Hays Secondary School.
For the first time, starting this month, high school students are being offered an introduction to health program that will put them on path to the health industry. The course is taught by a nurse after school three days a week in collaboration with Northwest Community College and Northern Health.
“The nurse is trying to craft a course where they get information that is quite hands on and giving them some background in each of those areas in terms of health and their future,” said Ken Minette, assistant superintendent for School District 52.
Students can sign up for the trades course starting in Grade 10. In the program’s first semester there are 18 students participating in Prince Rupert and 24 in the Smithers Secondary School. Considering the course is held from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. after school there is a clear interest in pursing a health career.
Charles Hays student Isobel LeBlanc said she had an interest in the field of medicine since she was young but wasn’t sure exactly what health career she wanted to pursue.
“I took this course to get a broader perspective and then be able to narrow down my options of what I really wanted to be. My ideal job would be a pediatrician,” LeBlanc said. Other students in the course said they’re exploring the possibilities of being a physiotherapist or an anesthesiologist.
Northwest Community College and CHSS worked together to design the course and Northern Health said it would provide the equipment for hands on learning. Students who graduate from the program will be offered a dual credit toward the health-related course or degree they choose to pursue at the college.