CHS health science students speak at Lions Club


A group of Canton High School health science students delivered the program April 18 at  a meeting of the Canton Lions Club held at the Van Zandt County Club.

CHS Health Science Instructor Amanda Burch opened the program after she was introduced by Canton Lions Club member Rhita Koches.

“I teach principles of health science, pharmacology, health science theory and medical terminology at the high school,” said Burch. “Why teach this in high school? This is an opportunity for students to come in and see if they are interested in the health care field. Part of my passion for these students that are here today (April 18) and all of the students that I have taught has focused on leadership and to understand empathy because I believe that is a lost art. We have to stop and think about the people we come into contact with. We might be the only smiling face they see that day and especially if they are coming in for health care, there are cultural diversities and different religious backgrounds that we need to know and learn about. We need to respect this because if we don’t, that can shut down a health care experience. When people are sick and they go in to have a procedure done, there are barriers. We need to appreciate the cultures of others.”

Joining Burch on the program were CHS health science students Kaylie Nicklas, Jackie Cochran, Cameron Karilo, Alyssa Chambless, Anna Read, Sage Davis, Chloe Simmons and Madison Opitz, who is serving as the CHS HOSA club president.

Each student was given the opportunity to report on different aspects of the CHS health science program.

Karilo talked about the health science club on the CHS campus known as HOSA which originally stood for Health Occupation Students of America and is now known as HOSA Future Health Professionals.

“The mission of HOSA is to empower future health professionals to become leaders in the global health community through education and experience,” said Karilo.

Karilo shared that there are over 185,000 HOSA members that are enrolled in health science and post-secondary programs that includes over 4,000 HOSA chapters led by instructors/advisers in 48 states.

There are scholarship applications available for health science students as well as the opportunity to travel to regional, state and national conferences, serve as local, regional, state and national officers, build a resume, and collaborate with health professionals and future employers, according to Karilo.

“We have a competitive event program that includes six different categories,” said Karilo. “This includes health science and health professional events, emergency preparedness, leadership, teamwork and recognition. I participate in the clinical nursing event. What I do is go into a room and do hands-on training and do skills to advance my career.”

CHS first got involved in the HOSA program three years ago, according to Burch, who is in her first year of teaching at CHS.

Nursing is the most popular field being pursued by CHS health science students followed by pharmacy and psychology, according to Burch.

Burch was pleased with the response following the program at the Lions Club meeting.

“I was so proud of all of our students,” said Burch. “The information seemed to be well received. The Lions Club was able to see a different side of education. What we are doing here is life and academic achievement. The students see it that way as well. They like to research different areas of health care and to go out and relay their own experiences to things that we discuss in the classroom.”

CHS has 40 students involved in HOSA and there are approximately 100 students taking health science courses currently at the campus.