Experiencing healthcare delivery first hand

Junior Volunteer Jeanette Lee assists Scott & White Round Rock’s Lauren Field in preparing patient meal trays.
Junior Volunteer Jeanette Lee assists Scott & White Round Rock’s Lauren Field in preparing patient meal trays.

For 81 high school students in Temple and Round Rock, Scott & White Healthcare’s Junior Volunteer programs are providing a behind-the-scenes look at the day-to-day operations of a hospital and affording insight into the vast array of healthcare careers available to today’s high school and college graduates.

Since 1968, Scott & White Hospital- Temple has accepted applications from students age 15 – 18 who are able to choose from 23 areas in which they can volunteer their time, based on two of their particular areas of interest.

“Most of our junior volunteers are interested in a medical profession, and many of them want to become physicians,” says Linda Roberson, Volunteer Services manager in Temple.  “Having an opportunity to volunteer in a hospital setting will assist them in making this decision and will have an impact on who they become.  We are excited about being a part of this experience and the effect we will have on making Central Texas a better place to live because of the medical care available to its residents.”

The Junior Volunteer Explorer Program at Scott & White Healthcare – Round Rock allows students to rotate through 15 different areas/departments to receive exposure in all aspects of a hospital environment.  The Emergency Department, Cardio Pulmonary, Physical Therapy, Food Service and Labor and Delivery are a few of the many specialties offering these students a first-hand look at the day-to-day operations of the hospital. Students are also able to view procedures from the Operating Rooms and Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory. In addition to the rotations, the volunteers attend weekly group meetings that feature guest speakers from the hospital.

It’s not every day you have a cardiologist explain to you exactly what happens during a cardiac catheterization, so Jacob Marez of Hutto is paying close attention to Round Rock cardiologist Jacobo Vazquez, MD.
It’s not every day you have a cardiologist explain to you exactly what happens during a cardiac catheterization, so Jacob Marez of Hutto is paying close attention to Round Rock cardiologist Jacobo Vazquez, MD.

“A neat part of our program is that the students gain a better understanding and deeper respect for what is necessary to make a hospital function,” says Belinda Curtis, Volunteer Services Manager at Scott & White Round Rock.  “We hope to provide these students with hands-on experience they can use in their future education toward careers in healthcare.”

According to one parent of a junior volunteer from last summer’s Round Rock program, the impact on her son’s life is obvious.  “Tyler was overwhelmed by the professionalism, kindness and opportunities he experienced at Scott & White,” says Heather Sonnier.  “We are so grateful for Scott & White’s efforts to make this a true educational experience for our teens.”

And the students aren’t the only ones who benefit from the experience. The Scott & White Blood Donation Center in Temple has utilized junior volunteers for the past two summers, and according to Donor Recruitment manager Regina Phinney, they’ve provided valuable assistance in recruitment and marketing activities.

“These students have provided support with large mailing projects, lent their voices to our tele-recruiting efforts to potential blood donors and helped inventory our merchandising and promotional items,” Ms. Phinney says.  “Probably the best part of their contributions is that many of them return to become regular blood donors.  We can’t thank them enough for the wonderful things they do as part of our team.”

For more information on the Junior Volunteer Program, contact Belinda Curtis in Round Rock at 512-509-9175 or Linda Roberson in Temple at 254-724-2818. 

Leave a Reply

Experiencing healthcare delivery first hand