Nearly 200 students from around Yuma County, who are interested in becoming future health and medical professionals, gathered at Cibola High School Tuesday, Nov. 26 for the University of Arizona’s annual Health Sciences Day.
They heard, first-hand, the wide number of options available in the health sciences program at the university.
Cibola hosted the event, which has taken place annually for nearly 12 years. Students from all five Yuma Union High School District schools were there and were selected based on interest and high academic achievement.
“We are here to expose students to careers in the health sciences field,” UA Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) Outreach Coordinator Sierra Dunn said. "We are really interested in growing our own. We want high school students to already learn about the opportunities for careers in health sciences to them and especially with dual credit classes available to them, right now, they can start taking those courses that will be required for those majors.”
Yuma County is the only county that UA participates in this type of informational event, which gives students an opportunity to meet current students and representatives from the Colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy and Public Health.
Events like these are important because students learn what classes should be completed in high school to prepare for a career in health sciences as well as find out about activities that could help boost acceptance in one of the most competitive fields at the university and learn about future job opportunities in the medical field in Yuma.
“I decided to come because I would like a career in the medical field, so I wanted to learn more about different types of careers available, different options,” Yuma High senior Paola Zavala said. “And I just wanted to get a better idea of how to reach my goal in the future, so I thought this would be really helpful in helping me do so.”
"I just wanted more information about the University of Arizona and see if I'm interested in attending," said Gila Ridge nursing student Jonathan Barragan. "I'm not sure which university I want to attend yet and this could help me learn which one has the best benefits [for me]."
Multiple presenters flew in from the UA Tucson campus. Presenters were also in attendance from Yuma Regional Medical Center.
Cibola’s vocational culinary arts program catered lunch for select students and presenters.