HOSA places in state during first year

Zachary Bahar, Executive Editor

While the ETHS branch of HOSA hasn’t been around for long, they’ve created a space for students to discuss and learn about medicine and health care.

“We started [thinking about] the club [in 2018-19]…. I had heard about [HOSA], then I brought the idea to four other people, and we got a sponsor,” senior and co-president of HOSA Ana Sweeney said. “The reason I wanted to start it was because there weren’t any health clubs specifically at ETHS, so I felt like it was something that the student body could really benefit from. [Last] year, we actually started the club, but we didn’t have competitions because we were just trying to get people interested; this year was our first year competing.”

The club is a branch of HOSA—Future Health Professionals, an international organization focusing on building and empowering the next generation of health workers. Despite its recent inception and the transition to remote meetings, the ETHS chapter has sustained around 30 members this year, with 25 state qualifiers and five top-10 placements for specific events at state.

“Starting in November, we dedicated most of our meeting time to preparing for the competitions, which I think is something, next year, we’ll probably try to balance between competition practice and activities that all the club members can participate in,” Sweeney said. “Mostly, we were split up into study groups during meetings or gave people individual study time.”

The competition aspect of the club consists of multiple-choice tests on a given topic including medical terminology, behavioral health and medical law and ethics. Some events also feature skill demonstrations or presentations on a designated topic. All competitions this year were conducted remotely.

“We were very transparent with the club members that it was our first time doing competitions too; everybody’s experiencing it for the first time at the same time, and, even though we’re the leaders, we’re also participating in the events, so we’re right there with them. But it went well,” senior and co-president Emily Hauser said.

Hauser hopes that this year’s success continues into the future. With the founders of the club graduating, it will be up to next year’s leadership to ensure that the space remains open for those looking for it.

“I think it’s been so special to me because of the leadership situation; I’ve been able to share the presidency with four other people. The fact that we’re all women has also been really important. I think that, oftentimes, there isn’t a space for female leadership in STEM—we’re obviously working towards that—but this has been a really strong female space,” Hauser said.

“It’s been really great to have a very collaborative space… We’ve just found so much collaboration and joy in it really, just bonding with people over something that we all love and something that we’re interested in.”