Friday, March 11, 2011

A day in the life

STUDENT SHADOWS: Students with their Department of Radiation Oncology hosts

FIFTY-TWO STUDENT SHADOWS caught a glimpse of their bright futures in health care during the 16th annual Job Shadow Day sponsored by the MGH Center for Community Health Improvement (CCHI) Youth Programs. The Feb. 23 event paired students from local high schools with MGH employees who served as hosts and mentors for the day. Students were matched with MGH staff based on their interests and spent several hours shadowing their hosts while they performed routine responsibilities, such as visiting patients and attending meetings.

“Hosts also took time to explain their roles and the education and experience required for their particular positions, helping students identify and explore potential career paths for themselves,” says Galia Wise, manager of CCHI Youth Programs. “At the same time, the students learned general principals of professionalism, such as networking.”

The students were welcomed to the MGH in the Haber Auditorium, where Wise provided an overview of the hospital and encouraged them to make the most of the experience. Ken Shelton, MD, a third-year resident in the Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, then offered some personal insight on health care careers. Students also were advised by Susan Horan, manager of the Bulfinch Temporary Service, about adhering to the MGH’s patient privacy policies throughout the day.

Approximately 40 clinical, research and administrative departments participated in the event. The Department of Radiation Oncology, for example, hosted eight students.

“The several hours I spent with two bright, interested and questioning students who are in the process of career planning were informative and pleasant,” says Herman Suit, MD, former chief of Radiation Oncology. “I hope this program will continue to develop and evolve at the hospital.”

For more information about volunteer opportunities with CCHI Youth Programs, contact Joan McCarthy, Youth Programs administrator, at 617-724-3210.

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