CPR-Training Launches Future Healthcare Professionals
CLARKSDALE – Two dozen high school students took the plunge into a career in health care when they earned CPR certification after receiving training Saturday at Coahoma Community College’s Allied Health Building.
The training was a part of the Tri-County Workforce Alliance’s (TCWA), a non-profit organization that’s in partnership with Coahoma Community College, High School Mentorship Program in Health Care Professions.
The program targets high school freshmen, sophomores and juniors in Coahoma, Bolivar, Tallahatchie, Sunflower and Quitman counties that are interested in pursuing a career in health care.
A second CPR certification training for 6th through 8th grade students participating in the TCWA’s Academy of Science, Reading and Mathematics for Potential Health Care Professionals program will be Saturday, Jan. 18, at CCC’s Workforce Development Center.
According to TCWA Director Josephine Rhymes, those interested in participating in one of the organization’s health care programs must receive CPR training before becoming officially admitted.
Twenty-four of 30 new high school students attended the CPR-class, formally called the American Heart Association’s Basic Life Support; the other six were already CPR-certified, Rhymes said. The training was led by CCC’s Instructor/Health Sciences Program Coordinator Tony Brooks.
Brooks said the goal of the class is to train participants to save lives of victims in cardiac arrest through high-quality cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
“The students were taught how to respond to life-threatening situations and maintain the victim until professional help arrived,” Brooks said.
“This class presented some situations where the students had to use critical thinking and respond in a professional manner to real-life situations. This type of training is required for all entering the healthcare field.”
Now that the students are CPR-certified, they will gain real-world experience in different health care careers through 60 hours of job-shadowing.
“The next step is to assign the students to a health professional mentor and to prepare them to begin job shadowing at local hospitals and health care centers. They’re all really excited to start that process,” Rhymes said.
“A lot of times, early in life students may say they want to be a doctor or nurse, but they don’t really know what the job entails. I’m trying to get them to see what it’s about now so they won’t get half way through college and maybe realize it’s not for them.”
Rhymes said the programs are also designed to show students to the variety of health care careers available.
“I feel it’s important to expose them and make them aware of what’s there. A lot of the students don’t realize the variety of healthcare career opportunities that are out there, so we’re trying to introduce them to different fields.”
CCC has partnered with TCWA since its founding 16 years ago, and the college serves as the site for the organization’s main office. TCWA is also funded by the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, the Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi, The Dreyfus Health Foundation of New York, The Mississippi Office of Workforce and the University of Mississippi’s Center for Population Study.