Job-shadowing provides an early introduction to health care careers for students from Benson High School in Omaha, NE. Benson High School offers a health professions academy whose mission is “To successfully build a strong foundation of real-world skills and experience for future health professionals.”

At a job-shadowing event at Immanuel Medical Center in Omaha, students got to watch a surgical procedure. They handled surgical instruments as a surgical nurse explained their function and the safe practices for using them.

The health care academy is one of three specializations at Benson. By 10th grade, students elect business and entrepreneurship, health professions or construction and design. Each academy provides a “wall to wall” approach, with the specialties built into core classes. Events like job-shadowing and business tours provide real-world experience that “makes the careers they’re pursuing more real,” according to Greg Schlegel, Benson’s health professions academy specialist.

The events also let students see the wide range of opportunities available beyond the standard doctor and nursing roles: from nursing assistants and phlebotomists to pharmacy technicians. introduces students to career options including Exercise Science, Laboratory Technician, Phlebotomy, Pharmacy Technician and Medication Technician.

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