Avera Marshall Director of Organizational Learning Vickie Abel coordinates internships, shadowing programs and residencies for medical students.
Think back to when you were in high school, you probably had a part time job at a fast food chain, or restaurant or maybe you worked at the mall. Nancy Naeve Brown met a brand new Marshall High School grad who spent her last semester working for free at the Avera Marshall Medical Center as an intern and as you'll hear what she learned is priceless.
Kelsey Przymus just hit two milestones in her young life. She just graduated from Marshall High School and finished up an internship at the Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center. She spent 2 hours a day, 3 days a week during her last semester shadowing mostly nurses in all different departments. Mavis Bonczeck and Lori Afdem are ER nurses and enjoyed showing the ropes to this enthusiastic student who already has her sites set on the medical field.
Kelsey says, "It was really cool. It helped me a lot. It's a totally different experience than what people think they know and I'm still in high school so it helps me decide what I want to do as I go to college."
Kelsey at the age of 18 got to see things most adults will never see. One of the coolest things she got to witness was a baby being delivered.
Kelsey says, "I got to see a lot of things. Also I saw a cleft lip and palate in the OB department, a club foot. I saw a gallbladder being removed and a bilateral hernia. A lot of nurses say get educated and come back and give back to the community. A lot of people leave the rural area and go to the big city. That really stood out."
Kelsey is one of about 200 students who will participate in programs at Avera Marshall over the course of this year. They age in range from high school shadow students to 3rd year med students. The person who coordinates all of this, Vickie Abel, Director of Organizational Learning at Avera Marshall says the students aren't the only ones gaining valuable knowledge.
Vickie Abel says, "We encourage new ideas and they all bring a different flavor of who they are and how they perceive healthcare so it's always interesting to have young here at our facility."
Of course as a high school intern Kelsey wasn't allowed to actually work on any real patients, but one day you never know, she may return from college as one of their co-workers.
High school students enrolled in the shadow and intern program come from all different schools, not just in Marshall and the college and graduate students come from all over the region. By the way, Kelsey plans to attend the Morehead State University in the spring. Right now she wants to be a nurse anesthetist with a minor in psychology and Spanish.