Inspiring youth to discover health care

Young teens across Southwestern Ontario have a new camp opportunity thanks to some dedicated and innovative Schulich Medicine students.

John Cameron, Dylan Russelo and Richard Ying Yu have been working with the School to launch Discovery Healthcare summer camp.

It is modelled after the former MedLINCS and MedQUEST camp programs, which have been held in the region and presented in partnership with organizations in a number of communities for many years.

Discovery Healthcare presents a summer experience for teenagers who have an interest in a health care career and want to explore a career in medicine, nursing, pharmacy or other health related fields.

This summer, campers will get hands-on experience with suturing and casting, grapple with medical cases, diagnose and treat patients and explore life as a physician, nurse, pharmacists or emergency medical services provider.

Russelo participated in Discovery Healthcare, in its former structure, when he was in high school, so when the opportunity arose to develop something new for youth in the region, he jumped at the chance.

“I was enticed by the opportunity to be a student lead designing the program and facilitating the camps this upcoming summer,” said Russelo.

Cameron was interested in medicine from a young age, and attended the camp program that Discovery Healthcare is being modelled after. He is looking forward to introducing students to health care and getting them excited about their future opportunities.

“Growing up in Lucknow, I was fortunate to participate in MedQUEST, and it provided me with an opportunity to shadow a health care professional and learn some clinical skills," Cameron said.

Organizers hope the camp will help to encourage individuals already interested in health care to pursue their goals, and inspire others to consider health care as a career option.

That’s exactly what it did for Yu, when he attended.

“I found the camp to be an enriching experience that further inspired me to pursue a career in medicine,” he said.

Camp sessions will be held in Chatham, Leamington, Sarnia and Wingham – locations that are part of the School’s Distributed Education network. Each camp is one week in length and has 25 spots available.

Registration is now open for Discovery Healthcare. To learn more, please visit the Distributed Education website.