Students job shadow, learn about future careers

The Future is Mine club at Southmoreland High School has recently opened up the opportunity to its club members to job shadow experienced physicians, nurse practitioners, and more.
Gracen Kenney, a sophomore member, recently shadowed a nurse practitioner at the Pediatric Association next to Frick Hospital. While Kenney does not wish to be a nurse practitioner in the future, she was grateful for the experience and the opportunity to open herself up to other options if her goal of becoming a surgeon “doesn’t work out” for her.
“I want to be a surgeon, and the job shadowing helped me understand a fast pace work day tht would come with such a profession,” said Kenney, “If I don’t get to become a surgeon, this helped me see different opportunities that I could pursue.”
When she was younger, Kenney had plans of becoming a pediatric surgeon to help children with omphalocele. Kenney was born with this defect; it is when an infant’s organs are on the outside of the abdomen through the belly button.
“When I was younger I wanted to be a pediatric surgeon to help children like myself, but now I could see myself doing general surgery,” said Kenney. “This whole experience has really encouraged me continue going after my dreams.”
Another sophomore, Justina Fasano, job shadowed Dr. Jennifer Siwula-Gill at her office in April. Fasano does not wish to work in the dental field, but perhaps in the medical field, and said it was still a great experience for her.
“ It was a good experience to see what it was like in the medical/dental atmosphere even if it wasn’t exactly what I want to pursue,” Fasano said.
Fasano said she was “very grateful” for the experience and that she was able to get out of the shadowing even though it was not the exact field she wants to work in. The experience has helped her “to better understand what it is like to work in that area” and has helped her to rule out dentistry as a future profession.
“The shadowing experience was definitely something I’m glad I did,” said Fasano. “I want to be a surgeon instead of a dentist, but the shadowing gave me some exposure, which was great.”
Fasano was exposed to “what is done up close and personal” rather than being in the chair getting work done. Her choice of joining the TFIM club was “one of the best decisions” she has made thus far in her high school career.
“TFIM is a great way to make friends, get more involved, and become exposed to different jobs and opportunities,” said Fasano.
By joining the club, she has been able to work with other people her age and help the community at the same time. Not just herself, but others who participate in the club believe that it is helping prepare teens for the future and the “real world. It is a great opportunity that anyone looking to become more active in the school should look into for the following school year,” she said.

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