UAIS junior ignites spark in younger students for medical careers
UAIS junior ignites spark in younger students for medical careers
Posted on 05/16/2019
Students wrapping arm in bandage as part of med health programA Utica Community Schools junior is making sure that junior high school students are getting a healthy start when it comes to exploring medical careers.

Julie Elfishawy, of the Utica Academy for International Studies, recently developed a free, three-day camp that allowed younger students to learn more about medical careers by meeting medical professionals, creating an independent research project and taking part in hands-on demonstrations. 

“If students can identify this path as their passion at a young age, it will ultimately make for better, more passionate professionals of the future,” she said.

The 32 junior high school students explored a wide range of medical careers by working with a cardiologist, a radiologist, orthodontist, nurse and physicians from Beaumont, and a panel for Oakland University William Beaumont medical students.

She also received a $1,500 scholarship from Sterling Orthodontics, which allowed Elfishawy to offer the camp free of charge to the students, including  lunches and T-Shirts. 

UCS district nurse Rebecca Rosbolt, who worked closely with Elfishawy, said the camp provided an engaging opportunity for younger students.

“Julie is a determined, hard working, organized passionate student who made her vision become a reality,” Rosbolt said. “The students who attended were engaged, learned a lot and had a lot of fun.”

It was a sentiment echoed by the campers.

“This camp make me want to become a doctor more than ever,” said Bemis Junior High School seventh grader Christopher Stephen. 

Amra Hayrizay, an Eppler Junior High School seventh grader, said the experience steered her away from a job in law. 

“The camp has influenced my future career and college goals,” she said. “I’m thinking about becoming a doctor or a nurse.”

Elfishawy hoped the camp would fill a critical need for more experiences to explore medical careers  at junior high by showing students options and a path to follow. 

“I thought that a lot of students would benefit tremendously from an opportunity for exposure in the field of health care before they are eligible to pursue internships or shadowing, to see for themselves if medicine is their passion," she said. 

The project was part of Elfishawy’s Creativity, Action and Service project for UAIS.

As part of their graduation requirements, UAIS students are required to complete 150 hours for the CAS project. 

Group photo of camp participants