Students interested in healthcare careers qualify for international competition


Hopkinton High School HOSA representatives for the upcoming International Leadership Conference in Nashville, Tennessee include (left to right) Hana Ruran, Kylie Skiba, Lindsay Hong, Prisha Shrivastava, Nandita Ramesh, Evanya Mathur, Noor Rana, Vidya Narendra, Pranamya Keshkamat and Roma Tewari.

A dozen Hopkinton High School students aspiring to a career in health care will be in Nashville, Tennessee, June 22-25 to participate in the International Leadership Conference for American Students in Health Professions (HOSA) .

The students earned this honor by placing in the top three at the state competition and will compete against approximately 10,000 competitors from around the world at the event.

According to counselor Marjorie Billeter, the student-run organization was created at HHS in 2020 during the pandemic when she was approached by two students, Ishita Khurana and Prachi Meher.

They had researched the international organization, which has college-age student members and wanted to establish the activity at HHS.

“When they arrived with such passion and a desire to learn more about healthcare, especially during a pandemic, I was thrilled to find a way to help move the club forward in a solid way,” said Billeter, an anatomy/physiology specialist and Professor of Chemistry.

The group allows students to explore career development opportunities and encourages student-professional relationships in many healthcare fields, including dentistry, veterinary medicine, medical technology, nursing and more.


Prachi Meher (left) and Ishita Khurana helped start the HOSA chapter at Hopkinton High School.

The Hopkinton HOSA chapter has grown rapidly and currently has 62 high school members and 15 college members. In addition to HHS qualifications, nine middle schoolers have placed in the top three at the state level, although they are not competing at the world level. Lauren Bailey-Jones is the counselor for the younger ones.

“It was very exciting to have such a great performance,” Billeter said.

She explained that at HOSA’s bi-weekly meetings, attendees receive instruction in CPR and first aid for severe trauma and hear from guest speakers from industry. They held a Be the Match fundraiser to raise awareness of the bone marrow transplant registry and to encourage more people to become donors.

The objective of the members was also to prepare for the competitions.

Sophomore Nandita Ramesh was part of a team whose project ranked first at the state level. The team prepared a 30-second public service announcement on the importance of bone marrow donations. In addition to filming the PSA, the group released the video to an audience of freshmen in a chemistry class as well as a junior anatomy class.

Ramesh is excited about the upcoming international competition. “I look forward to meeting talented students from different places who share the same aspirations and interests as me,” she said.

In addition, Ramesh said she wants to build relationships with students from other schools and strengthen existing bonds with her teammates and other club members.

Her second-year teammate, Evanya Mathur, noted that Massachusetts doesn’t have a big HOSA presence compared to other states and she’s looking forward to seeing how the team’s PSA video compares globally. “It will be very useful and exciting,” she said.

Co-founder Khurana, a junior, placed second in an individual event, clinical specialty, as well as a team event for health education.

For the first category, she compiled a portfolio detailing her experience shadowing a cell therapy process engineer at Lykan Bioscience in Hopkinton and demonstrated a career-related skill, aseptic dressing, through a video submission. .

His team worked to organize introductory classes in CPR and Stop the Bleed for high school students. They also offered additional emergency training for students seeking certification.

Additionally, Khurana has qualified for a health-related volunteer service award, both nationally and internationally.

Khurana said she finds healthcare “fascinating” because of the range of career options, including areas such as medical assisting, hospital security and hospital management.

“I sincerely believe that there is a career in healthcare for everyone,” she said. His own interests are medicine, especially surgery.

She added: “However, the field is not perfect and there are many systemic issues that negatively impact the treatment of healthcare workers and patients – issues that I aim to address.”

In addition to participating in the Nashville event, students will have the opportunity to attend workshops, seminars, exhibits, and other professional development activities.

Mathur said entering the medical field means a lot, especially with the personal experience of having a disabled grandfather.

“Medicine is extremely fascinating beyond that as well,” Mathur said. “Not just the anatomical study, but also the bonds you build, the relationships you make, and the meaning of the work you do.”

In addition to allowing HOSA to allow Ramesh to explore his interest in medicine, “I successfully learned the art of communicating with my teammates to complete tasks competently and efficiently,” he said. she stated.

Hopkinton HOSA is seeking individual and corporate sponsors to help students offset airfare, hotel and registration costs, Billeter said. Interested donors can contact her at [email protected]

“It’s a pretty dynamic group,” Billeter said of the contestants. “They are so passionate, have intellectual curiosity and empathy”, all traits that will serve them well in their future professions.

Here are the results of Hopkinton High School students in the state competition:

Ishi Khurana, second place, clinical specialty

Srilakshmi Venkatesen, Noor Rana and Prisha Shrivastava, Third Place, Health Education Team Event

Prachi Meher, Ishi Khurana, Lindsay Hong and Kylie Skiba, second place, health education team event

Pranamya Keshkamat, third place, medical law and ethics

Prachi Meher, first place, medical mathematics

Nandita Ramesh, Evanya Mathur, Vidya Narendra and Roma Tewari, first place, public service announcement

Hana Ruran, first place, wanted poster

Here are the results of Hopkinton Middle School students in the state competition:

Saanvi Mittal and Anabelle Castoreno, First Place, Health Career Display

Leah Hong, first place, medical terminology

Ishan Patel, second place, medical terminology

Devanshi Agrawal, Neya Rajasingh and Aryan Shah, First Place, Public Health Team Event

Tarvika Pratty and Harini Jayaraman, second place, public health team event


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