How to prepare for the medical field in high school

Kathryn Hickenlooper, Reporter

Registered nurses are the largest healthcare population, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. They work as a team with healthcare specialists.  Registered nurses make, on average, $32.04 an hour– and for good reason. They make so much because they do so much.

According to American Nursing Association (ANA), nurses perform physical exams, provide health promotion and counseling, administer medications, and more. They go through extensive training, needing at least two years of college for an Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ADA), or a four-year Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing (BSN). They could also receive higher levels of education.Master’s Degree in Nursing (MSN), Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), or Doctor in Philosophy (PhD) degrees are available for those who are truly determined.

Anybody interested in a future career in nursing could take classes in high school as well. Mr. Garrett Wilson, basketball coach as well as English teacher, offers a semester long Intro to Health Science class. Intro to Health Science gives students who are interested in a career in healthcare some basics for more advanced classes. “We go over basic anatomy and physiology, diseases and disorders, and explore career fields within healthcare,” Wilson explains.

Wilson also offers a year-long Exercise Science- Sports Medicine class. Sports medicine is designed for students interested in healthcare within the sports world. Students learn many components of exercise science/sports medicine. “This class is perfect for future Athletic Trainers, Physical Therapists, Dieticians, Medical Doctors, Sport Psychologists, and more,” Wilson says.

Next year he plans to offer a full year Medical Terminology class. “Medical Terminology is a must for anyone going into healthcare,” Wilson insists. Students will learn the meanings and pronunciations of prefixes, roots, and suffixes that combine to form over 11,000 medical terms. Medical Terminology is a prerequisite for Medical Assisting, Pharmacy Technician, and Certified Nursing Assistant at the GTI and recommended for any students who are planning on taking medical training classes in the future.” All of these classes, as well as more, are also offered at GTI. General core classes, especially science and math, are vital to the career.

GTI offers a program on Certified Nurse Assisting. Students learn basic nursing skills, such as how to record vitals, recognizing changes in body functioning, and more. The class is $25 per semester at GTI. It prepares students for future jobs in the nursing career, hopefully exiting the class with experience and confidence in the field.

Students could graduate high school as a nursing assistant and make an average of $12.06 an hour after passing the GTI program. They could work as a nursing assistant while going through school to become a proper nurse. The extra four years of school to get a Bachelor’s degree and work as a registered nurse will add at least $20 to their hourly income.