ELIZABETHTOWN - Five local students are getting the opportunity to get a sneak-peak at the medical world while earning high school and college credits.
New Visions, a program offered through CV-TEC, allows students to embark on career-oriented programs, such as the medical industry, by working with professionals in those fields at Champlain Valley Physicians Hospital and Elizabethtown Community Hospital.
"This advanced program is designed to provide motivated high school seniors from a variety of Essex and Clinton County schools with a challenging academic curriculum in preparation for a medical career," Tammi Kreckel, instructor for the Elizabethtown-Lewis Central School-based program, said.
"We have five students that were interested in different areas of medicine," Kreckel said about the class. "This course gives them the opportunity to experience different medical careers and it is an opportunity to explore the options that are out there for them. They get to branch out to see all sides of health care."
Students participating in the class include Beekmantown seniors Zachary Burdick and Dakota Prue, Plattsburgh senior Brad Phillips, Keene senior Jessica Caner and ELCS senior Ashli Canabush.
"I watch what was going on when my father had cancer, and it inspired me to look into the medical field," Canabush said, who had already been working at ECH as a volunteer. "I enjoy all of the new things that I see every day and this is opening our mind to the possibilities that are out there. I was first considering being an RN. Now, I am going to try and be a nurse practitioner."
Canabush said that she has found a new desire for the profession as part of the program.
"It pushes me to want to do more because the more that I can do, the more people I can help," Canabush said. "I feel so good about it. It's exciting to meet new people and be a part of their life in a positive way."
Phillips said he also joined the program based on family experiences.
"My parents are both nurses," Phillips said. "I have been volunteering when they work I wanted to learn more. This has been great because I have been able to go into departments and labs that I have never seen before."
Some of the students said they were surprised at how each department in the hospital works together.
"It has been great to see the different groups and how they all work together and are connected," Caner said.
"There are so many different jobs and everyone works together to get stuff done for the patients," Prue said.
"The course has definitely made the medical field very intriguing," Burdick said. "I have thought about getting into a medical program and a medical field, and this has been a lot of fun seeing what happens around the hospital."
"Students get to witness physicians assessing patients, performing procedures and determining outcomes," Kreckel said, adding that the students recently were able to witness a colonoscopy.
Students interested in learning more about the New Visions program can visit the Web site www.cves.org or through their school guidance counselor.