High schoolers become clinicians for a week at MultiCare Nurse Camp

More than 100 high school students in Tacoma, Wash., attended MultiCare Nurse Camp last week to learn more about careers in healthcare, reports the Kent Reporter.

Tacoma-based MultiCare Health System launched the free five-day camp in 2004 after identifying the need for a more diverse and well-prepared healthcare workforce. The camp aims to inspire and motivate teenagers to pursue a career in nursing or other healthcare-related fields, according to Sheri Mitchell, the community outreach liaison for the MultiCare Center for Healthy Living and Health Equity.

"[The camp] was set up to create that pipeline from high school to college to career," Ms. Mitchell told the Kent Reporter. "We hope that by giving them exposure to the different health professions and, of course, nursing, that will help the nursing shortage."

During the camp, high school students toured the operating rooms, emergency departments and patient rooms of MultiCare's five local hospitals. They also learned how to use medical devices, practiced suturing and inserting IV starts on mannequins, among other activities.

"It was really interesting to see how much a nurse and doctor work," camper Emily Huynh told the Kent Reporter. "I didn't expect to feel the emotional aspect of being in a hospital. It doesn't really hit you (until you see) how close the doctors and nurses work with patients … [and] their families during the time they stay at the hospital. I found that really powerful and interesting."

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