High school students hone their career goals during Si Se Puede
David Lopez, EdD, RCP, RRT, teaches Miguel Quispe and Rosalina Arella how to take a pulse. Dr. Lopez is chair of the cardiopulmonary sciences department in the School of Allied Health Professions.
When 15 Hispanic high school students recently arrived on the Loma Linda campus, many of them thought of medicine as the only option in the health science career field. Others were interested in health science careers but unsure which one to pursue.
After a week on campus, the students learned insights that will help them prepare for their futures.
“Once they are exposed to our program, they have a better understanding of the wide variety of fields in health sciences and a list of possibilities of careers they could pursue,” says Johanny Valladares, program coordinator.
The program is called Si Se Puede, which is a Spanish phrase that translates to “yes you can.” It is now two years old and is open to Hispanic Seventh-day Adventist high school juniors and seniors. Those chos
Ilsis Pozo experiments with a computerized practice dummy in the medical simulation laboratory.
en must exhibit exemplary characteristics in their academic and personal lives. The students must also have an interest in health sciences careers.
Fifteen students participated in Si Se Puede this year, including two from out of state. They spent an interactive week gaining exposure to anatomy, physiology, disease process, patient care, health care, and research and laboratory studies. They also participated in a program to enhance their learning and study skills, including speed reading and comprehension.
Social and spiritual activities are also an important part of the program.
Eighteen-year-old Maribel Soriano of San Bernardino, who participated in Si Se Puede, describes the experience as “amazing.”
“The program opened my eyes to many new things,” Ms. Soriano says.
Lizette Cervantes, far right, practices using a stethoscope. In the background are (from left) Melissa Castellanos and Maribel Soriano.
nted to participate in Si Se Puede so that she could better formulate her professional goals.
“I wanted to be sure that the career choice I made was the right one for me,” says Ms. Soriano, who graduated this year from Redlands High School.
Ms. Soriano became interested in pediatric surgery based on what she experienced in Si Se Puede.
“I was really amazed at what I saw,” she says.
During the program, the students catch Loma Linda’s desire to reach out and help people, according to Ms. Valladares.
“The students left feeling the need to serve others in a greater capacity,” she says.
They learn the importance of meeting people’s physical needs, as well as their spiritual ones, Ms. Valladares continues.
“They leave understanding what it is ‘to make man whole’ and feeling the call to be part of it,” she says.
By Heather Reifsnyder