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UMFK and NMMC "Nursing Discovery Camp" continues to be a success

July 21, 2009



Nursing Camp Participants: (front row: l to r) Destiny Lizotte from Auburn, Maine; Melissa Hryniewicz from Agawam, Massachusetts; Chelsea Hart from West Harford, Vermont; Teresa Hawkes from Wilton, Maine; Blake Farnsworth from Gardiner, Maine; Joslyn Ribar from Windsor, Maine and Paula Sirois from Island Falls, Maine (back row: I to r) Brittany Tinkham from Medway, Maine; Katie McLellan from Topsham, Maine; Hattie Gushee-Kimball from Fryeburg, Maine; Emily Hebert from Westbrook, Maine; and Hannah McLaughlin from Oxford, Massachusetts.

Twelve high school students attended a four-day "Nursing Discovery Camp," which was held on the University of Maine at Fort Kent campus and at Northern Maine Medical Center, from June 29 through July 2. 

"Setting career goals at an early age helps adolescents to plan constructively for their future. The Division of Nursing feels that the Nursing Discovery Camp increases awareness of the career opportunities offered here in the St. John Valley and beyond," said Erin Soucy, UMFK's director and assistant professor of nursing. "We stimulate excitement about nursing. The participants had the opportunity to learn select nursing skills, job shadow, and speak with nursing students enrolled at UMFK and with practicing nurses."             

"We had a great group of students again this year. Partnering with UMFK to offer the job shadow experience in the hospital setting is very positive for the students as well as the staff. It allows the staff to demonstrate the great things they do every day in healthcare and it offers the students a window into the realities and rewards of being a nurse. Throughout the four days of hands-on experiences, various clinical settings such as Operating Room, Intensive Care, Long term care, Emergency Department, Endoscopy, Medical Surgical, and Psychiatry provide interactive sessions to provide participants a view of nursing in each specialty." noted Joanne Fortin, director of nursing at NMMC.            

The nursing camp participants were involved with hands-on activities, lectures, and nurse job shadowing. They were engaged in learning how to take vital signs and perform basic first aid skills. In addition to being introduced to the overall field of nursing, the students also explored specific nursing fields including medical-surgical, obstetrical, operating room, emergency, intensive care unit and advanced practice nursing.                        

The camp is co-sponsored by Northern Maine Medical Center and Acadia Health Education Coalition & Office of Rural Health and Primary Care, along with the UMFK Nursing Program and Academic Outreach Office.            

For more information on nursing or other camps held at on the UMFK campus, please contact the Nursing Division at 834-7580.