Keara didn’t expect her senior year to be so difficult. She knew that the four dual credit courses plus Anatomy and Physiology and Health Science II were exactly what she needed to prepare her for college. It was just that it was her senior year, the year she has been working so hard toward, and shouldn’t it be more relaxed and like a party?
She shakes her head and explains, “It’s all the memorizing and the work. Mrs. Smith (Anatomy and Physiology teacher) prepares you big time, but it’s tough.”
That’s not to say Keara doesn’t have fun.
This is her last year in the Quitman High School Chorus, and she loves to sing. She has sung in the school chorus since junior high, sang the National Anthem during last Saturday’s Unity Parade, and will probably always sing in her church choir. But then maybe it’s a family thing, because it wasn’t that long ago that her mom was doing the same.Though Keara has enjoyed following in her mom’s footsteps at Quitman High School, she is excited about getting away from her hometown for college.
“I am going to EMCC in Scooba because I’ve read that I can get a full scholarship and $450 for books with a 3.0 GPA and a 23 on my ACT. I’ve already applied and sent them my transcripts. I know I’ll have to commute to the Golden Triangle to take nursing classes, but I really want to move away for college. Sure, I want to come home every weekend, but I don’t want to stay at home.”
Keara knows it won’t be easy, but then that’s at least in part the preparation she is getting during her senior year in high school. She is no stranger to the work.
Saturday, January 28th is HOSA‘s Central District Conference. It’s where Keara will be competing alongside her fellow HOSA members for a chance to compete in the state and possibly the national competitions. She will be performing one of the six skills she has been practicing in the health science classroom at the Career Tech Center. Mrs. Owen offers the classroom, equipment and her expertise most every afternoon. HOSA members are only required to attend six practice sessions, but Keara claims she has been to many more. For those like Keara, who are looking for college scholarships, winning a HOSA competition is worth the extra practice.
Keara has chosen to compete in HOSA’s Clinical Nursing. The six skills she has been rehearsing are administering an intramuscular medication, administering a subcutaneous medication, measuring oxygen saturation, discontinuing peripheral IV access, straight urethral catheterization, and applying a nasal cannula or oxygen mask. Keara has no idea which skill the judges will ask her to perform, but she will be ready to perform any of them.
It’s just like how one day in the near future Keara will be ready to pursue an associate’s degree in nursing, and that degree will help her reach her final dream of working in a neonatal unit.