Students Initiate Change in the Medical Community


Juliette Uncovsky, Associate Editor

Excitement fills the air in G building after a long day for students who plan to pursue their passion in the medical field. Whether it be to become dentists, pediatricians or surgeons, these students have a strong determination to reach their dream through participation in a medically influenced organization.

“Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) is an organization dedicated to providing its members with exposure to the field of healthcare,” president of HOSA, senior Rojon Sangani said. “We do this through community service, guest speakers, competition and various other activities.”

HOSA is a program focused on leadership development, motivation and recognition. It is exclusively made for students from high school to college enrolled in health science education and biomedical science programs or have interests in pursuing careers in health professions.

“This club will aid me and other members to be introduced into the medical field at an early age,” vice president of competition, senior Catherine Pearson said. “Being in HOSA, I know I am going to gain more knowledge about the medical field and get more involved in the community.”

There are approximately 80 students that are a part of HOSA currently. Created in 1976, the program is an international student organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Health Science Education Division.

“My favorite part of being a sponsor is helping students be successful in HOSA competition,” sponsor Kayla Kellar said. “I was in HOSA when I was in high school and I want students to experience everything HOSA has to offer just like I did because it is such an amazing experience.”

There are many different purposes of HOSA. It serves to give exposure of the medical field to students as well as give them volunteer opportunities and the possibility to work directly within the community.

“I want members to be able to understand that they can have an impact on the people around them” Pearson said. “My favorite part of the club is being able to help people that need medical attention, while also learning skills that will help me in the future.”

HOSA has various different types of volunteer work its members can do in order to accommodate all its member’s likes.

“I really hope that members can experience the reward that comes with long-term volunteering and not feel it is a chore but a rewarding activity,” Sangani said. “I will soon be launching a new method which will contain carefully selected volunteer locations for people that like different things such as animals, nursing homes or hospitals.”

The organization holds many activities throughout the year to benefit those in need in the community. One of HOSA’s main goals is to ensure its members work hard toward giving medical help to anyone in need.

“We have about two drives every nine weeks, which is something I hope to start doing more often,” Sangani said. “Our past two were our craft drive for Presbyterian Hospital and our Halloween drive for Children’s Hospital. This allows us to really give back to the community while getting our members more involved with hands-on stuff like goodie bag making and blanket making for Children’s Hospital.”

Once a month, HOSA meets to discuss projects, updates on the volunteering and a first hand look at what being in the medical field is like.

“A meeting includes service project information and typically a guest speaker that is a healthcare professional in the community,” Kellar said. “I want students to be exposed to a variety of healthcare professions through HOSA as well as gain connections to great volunteer and shadowing opportunities in local hospitals, clinics and nursing homes through our service projects.”

Later this year, the organization will compete in a series of competitions to determine their knowledge of the medical field, and what they have learned by being members of the club.

“We have HOSA competition every year which has a wide variety of events,” Sangani said. “Some examples are medical spelling, biomedical debate, HOSA bowl and community awareness to name a few.”

HOSA holds a mission to promote career opportunities in the healthcare industry and to enhance the delivery of quality health care to all people.

“With their membership in HOSA, I know students will get sufficient exposure to the medical field in order to help them in their future endeavors,” Sangani said. When I see people from my community smile after we help them, I know that we made a difference in their lives and that is what HOSA is all about.”