256 Cuyahoga County High School Students Shadow Local Healthcare Professionals
In 2002, The Center for Health Affairs workforce initiative, NEONI, launched a Healthcare Career Shadowing Program for high school students to learn first-hand about local healthcare career opportunities and job skills by spending one day in a real-life healthcare workplace environment. Since its inception, more than 5,000 high school students have taken the opportunity to have this experience. The 2011-2012 Shadowing Program, which ended in May, was the most successful academic year yet, with 474 Northeast Ohio high school juniors and seniors from nine counties taking part; 256 of these students were from Cuyahoga County Schools.
Every year the NEONI Healthcare Career Shadowing Program generates positive feedback from both the students who participate and the volunteer healthcare professionals they shadow.
“The students are always so friendly and courteous to us. It's a pleasure to help them find the right career for their future and the future of healthcare,” said Judy L. Pruchnicki-Heikkinen, a Shadowing Hospital Coordinator at Mercy Regional Medical Center.
When asked for feedback in an anonymous survey, student participants expressed gratitude for their experiences, saying “I really enjoyed shadowing my nurse. She was enthusiastic about her work and allowed me to be confident in my choice of career,” and “I loved my experience. It helped me to see a regular day in the burn unit and how much the job matters to people.”
Students from the following 20 Cuyahoga County schools spent a day at one of 20 area participating hospitals interacting with professional healthcare practitioners. Visit the NEONI Facebook page to view a photo album of this year’s Shadowing participants in action.
- Cleveland Central Catholic High School (7 students)
- Cleveland Heights High School (21 students)
- Collinwood High School (1 student)
- Cuyahoga Valley Career Center (49 students)
- Holy Name High School (7 students)
- Lakewood High School (6 students)
- North Royalton High School (4 students)
- Parma Senior High School (8 students)
- Polaris (72 students)
- Polaris - Berea High School (7 students)
- Polaris - Brooklyn High School (2 students)
- Polaris - Midpark High School (13 students)
- Polaris - North Olmsted High School (3 students)
- Polaris - Olmsted Falls High School (3 students)
- Polaris - Strongsville High School (26 students)
- Rocky River High School (16 students)
- Shaker Heights High School (1 student)
- Solon High School (1 student)
- St. Ignatius High School (1 students)
- Westlake High School (8 students)
NEONI's Healthcare Career Shadowing Program allows juniors and seniors to job shadow in the fields of nursing, radiology, laboratory technology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, pharmacy and respiratory therapy. The program is offered at no charge to both students and schools.
Next year’s Shadowing Program is already underway and NEONI encourages high school guidance counselors to visit www.NEONI.org to learn how they can help their high school’s juniors and seniors to participate in this program.
About The Center for Health Affairs
The Center for Health Affairs is the leading advocate for Northeast Ohio hospitals, serving those organizations and others through a variety of advocacy and business management services. The Center also works to inform the public about issues that affect the delivery of health care. Formed by a visionary group of hospital leaders 96 years ago, The Center continues to operate on the principle that by working together hospitals can ensure the availability and accessibility of health care services. For more on The Center, go to www.chanet.org.