HOSA attracts more high school students to the healthcare field - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

HOSA attracts more high school students to the healthcare field

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics has pinpointed 30 of the fastest growing occupations over the next decade—more than two thirds of those jobs are in the healthcare industry.

To keep up with all of that growth, an organization called Health Occupations Students of America or HOSA, has come to South Dakota to encourage more high school students to join the health care field.

"Healthcare workers are just starting to retire because of the baby boom population so we felt it was important to get high school students involved as early as possible, to answer some of their questions and really nurture and encourage the interest of being a healthcare professional," said Brock Rops, the HOSA state adviser in South Dakota.

HOSA is the only nationwide student organization whose focus is 100% health care. The organization came to South Dakota two years ago as an initiative of the South Dakota Area Health Education Center Program Office. The organization offers skill development and projects giving students an "inside" look at some of the most sought after health careers.

Students from all over South Dakota are able join the SD HOSA family. Ninety-seven percent of the counties in South Dakota are considered rural. Students in these communities are "parched" in regard to knowledge and experiences regarding health care and we aim to "quench their thirst."

The HOSA state conference is being held in Sioux Falls this week with the help of healthcare professional from Avera and Sanford.

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