HOSA is a global student-led organization. Its mission is to empower future health professionals to become leaders in the global health community through education, collaboration, and experience. Pathway’s HOSA club is led by Harry Dittrich, eighth grade science teacher, who is in his seventh year of teaching and was a HOSA member in high school. Dittrich is in his third year of advising this group. This article was written last year about the students’ results at the state competition.
This group taught the 11 students how to find their pulse and understand their heart rate.
The Teddy Bear Medical School was open to the fifth-grade scholars, in hopes that by participating in the event they may decide to join HOSA next year when they become middle schoolers. Pathway partnered with Dayton Children’s hospital in setting up stations the scholars could visit with their teddy bear or other stuffed animals.
To start the event, one of the HOSA members put on a bear costume and came into the gym area. He had acted as though he had a broken leg, so Dayton Children’s hospital staff went through the process of what takes place when that happens. The first step is to call 911, and scholars heard the type of questions that should be asked of the patient.
The Child Life staff hosted a table, right, to explain how they help children ease their pain and anxiety while in the hospital by occupying them with fun activities.
“Then I acted as if I was an EMT, Emergency Medical Technician, which I was for eight years prior to becoming a teacher,” Dittrich said. I talked about how the teddy bear might need to be taken by ambulance, then the students went to the various hospital tables that were set up.”
There were several stations hospital staff hosted and taught the 11 scholars attending about their work. One group taught the students how to find their pulse and understand their heart rate. Child Life staff hosted a table to describe how they help children ease their pain and anxiety while in the hospital by occupying them with fun activities. There was also a nurse, a patient care aide, and a social worker who described the work they do at the hospital.
There were 28 people who registered for the blood drive and 17 people were actually able to donate.
“Also, we had someone from the Information Technology department,” Dittrich said. “I wanted the students to understand that there are all sorts of careers you can have in a hospital, especially if you can’t handle blood. You can still work there and be a vital piece of the puzzle.”
After the students went around to the individual tables they came back together to debrief. Also, the HOSA members talked about the club and the types of things they do and why if you are interested in health care, it is a worthwhile club to join. Then students received Teddy Bear Medical School certificates of completion.
Each unit of blood can help three people, meaning that’s enough blood to save 51 people.
The second event the HOSA members hosted was a blood drive by partnering with the Community Blood Center on Feb. 25. There were 28 people who registered for the drive and 17 people were actually able to donate.
“Each unit of blood can help three people, meaning that’s enough blood to save 51 people,” Dittrich said. “Even though the HOSA club members are not old enough to donate, they were able to volunteer. They got snacks for people or held a hand if someone was a little squeamish while donating.”
HOSA Advisor Harry Dittrich enjoys sharing his love of the medical and health care careers with his scholars and even donated blood to the cause.
Since Pathway students could not donate blood, the HOSA members set up an information table during parent teacher conferences in order to ask parents to register for the blood drive. Staff registered to donate, as well.
“I want to give them as much exposure as possible to various health care careers, especially at this age level,” Dittrich said. “I think it will be so helpful for them before they even get to high school as they start thinking about the type of career they want. HOSA puts them on the path so much sooner.”
HOSA provides a unique program of leadership development, motivation, and recognition for students of all ages who are either enrolled in health science education and biomedical science programs or have interests in pursuing careers in health professions.
The next event for the Pathway HOSA members is to attend the state competition, which takes place March 16. Good luck to the team and thank you to Advisor Dittrich, who enjoys sharing his love of the medical and health care careers with his scholars!
About Pathway School of Discovery
Pathway School of Discovery is a tuition-free, public charter school in Dayton, Ohio, serving students in kindergarten through eighth grade. It is part of the National Heritage Academies network, which includes more than 95 tuition-free, public charter schools serving more than 65,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade across nine states. For more information, visit nhaschools.com.