Teen volunteers get a firsthand look at careers in healthcare



there are 110 teenagers in scrubs around UAB this summer team volunteers for weekly with you they volunteer throughout the hospital UAB Highlands Callahan I and the Kirkland Clinic many are here to get a first-hand look at what a career in healthcare is all about so they may get to watch a bedside procedure or they may have the opportunity to shadow a nurse or physician they put in a full day's work answering the phones filling supply orders helping patients and learning when I first came to UAB I was first thinking you know a doctor or a nurse I thought that those were the only options but now after being in the setting and seeing all the different members of the team I'm actually thinking RNA rnf a registered nurse first assist or see organ so those were two options that I didn't know existed before my first year I volunteered in the radiology department I worked in the back in the MRI room helping patients get in the machines my second year I worked in the echocardiographic lab it's basically like the ultrasound of the heart and this year I'm in surgical pathology I just wanted to see what the everyday life would be for a doctor and for other people working with doctors my sisters in medical school both my parents work at UAB hopefully I'll be working a baby in a few years Derner Williams followed that route as a teen volunteer in the early 90s my mom actually is a nurse too and she encouraged me to do the volunteering at the hospital to see if that's truly what I wanted to do it was she went to nursing school at UAB worked in the hospital got a doctorate in nursing practice and is now on the faculty at the UAB School of Nursing her teenage observations helped her cope with the academic challenges of nursing school I definitely was able to draw from the experiences that I had as a volunteer seeing the nurses and really the whole healthcare team working together to help the patient I know they had to go through similar getting to make challenges as well to get to where they were so that really did help me to know that they were able to do and I could do the same we have a lot of our teen volunteers that start out with a very vague idea of what working in a hospital means and by the time that they get done volunteering here they see more of what a career in healthcare can mean and then they can take that to college with them to help firm up where they want to go do they want to be a physical therapist do they want to be a physician or nurse

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