Tuesday, June 19, 2007

A world of new friends

Shortly after I started blogging, I was asked by the newly launched MP Magazine to write a feature piece on “Saipan Blogging”. (By the way, the latest news is that the issue will be out in July). I headed to the Saipan Bloggers meet-up and among the questions I asked was, “Is it typical for bloggers to get together in person.” Absolutely not. It’s an anomaly. But here on Saipan, it’s the thing to do. Jeff is organizing a bloggers dive on Thursday. Here is a bunch of people who otherwise have little or no affiliation except that they blog. We’re bonded.

I was thinking this as I walked into Southern High School this afternoon. Bree, whom I met for the first time at that bloggers meet-up, had invited me to give a presentation to a group of 19 high-school students who are in the midst of a two week Health Career Camp. They, along with Bree and other instructors, are sequestered away at an undisclosed location (Aquarius Beach Tower). They spend their days in the classroom learning anatomy, physiology and the ins and outs of various health related careers. The whole thing is covered by a grant from the national Area Health Education Center (AHEC). Stimulating interest in healthcare careers, particularly in rural underserved areas is one of the thrusts of AHEC. (Did I get this right, Bree?)

I spent a couple of hours answering the student’s questions, giving the “doctor” perspective on healthcare. How long does it take to become a doctor? Do you have time for your family? What do you hate about your job? What do you love about your job? Is it okay to swim with your eyes open? Is there a cure for mono?

More than anything else, I tried to impress upon them the absolute fact that if they have enough brains to tie their shoes, they can probably make it through medical school. It just takes discipline.

I hadn’t put together any fancy Power Point presentation for the talk, but Bree had pulled some of the gory eye pictures off of my blog, and she projected them onto the screen while I told the students the details of the photos.

Everyone has a good time. They applaud. We take a picture. I pack up my stuff and head out the door. As I’m leaving, Bree is passing out two of my blog entries, Magic and Medicine, and Medical Care in the CNMI to the kids. Over the next hour, they are to read the pieces and write responses to questions that Bree is writing on the board. How cool is that!


marianas life said...

thanks again for coming. they were working on the questions for homework tonight too. i'll have some of them post comments to you.

Bev said...

It's fun presenting eh?! I just presented to this summer class today and they asked great questions =) Wish I had a camara to take pics with!