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University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus

University of Colorado Denver, Newsroom

Young students get hands-on experience in health care

Annual program welcomes potential future professionals

4/17/2014
Young students get hands-on experience in health care

AURORA, Colo. - More than 200 young students recently participated in the 2014 Health Professions Opportunity Day (hPod) at the Anschutz Medical Campus.

The 7th Annual hPod Conference welcomed middle- and high- schools students from across the Denver Metro area, along with 75 parents. The purpose of the program is to expose youth to health professions through hands-on workshops, as well as to showcase the facilities at CU Anschutz.

For the third year of this event, the Office of Inclusion and Outreach partnered with the Center for Pre-Collegiate and Academic Outreach Programs from CU Denver. All of this year’s attendees also participate in one of the University-sponsored pre-collegiate programs, including Pre-Collegiate Middle School, Pre-Collegiate Development Program, Pre-Collegiate Health Careers, Upward Bound, and CU Denver Scholars.

"The hPod program would not have been as successful without the support of many volunteers including several students from the downtown campus, Undergraduate Pre-Health Program (UPP) and, of course, the great students from the various Anschutz Medical Campus programs who lead the workshops," said Christian Valtierra, assistant director, Office of Diversity and Outreach.

The day started with a keynote from Dr. Candido Chacon, director of Admissions, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.
 
Then participants headed off to hands-on workshops lead by representatives from various educational tracks such as Physician Assistant, Physical Therapy, Doctor of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, School of Public Health, Bioengineering, and Dental Medicine.
 
The young students learned how to take blood pressure, they experienced cleaning teeth, dissecting cow eye balls, and they even sutured bananas.
 
The parents also were invited to workshops on topics that provided additional resources to support their child including Healthy Eating and Financial Aid 101. 
 
The day's program concluded with hPod’s first Fitness Challenge, which engaged participants in different activities and reinforced the overall importance of fitness and nutrition.

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