Highline College

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Summer class explores health care careers

Remi Frederick Staff Reporter May 27

Students can now apply to the Healthcare Exploration for Youth program which will be held at Highline this summer.

The Healthcare Exploration for Youth (HEY) is a program where low-income youth and young adults from ages 16-24 can explore many different medical careers through field trips and lectures.

HEY explores careers such as respiratory technicians, nursing assistants, surgery technicians and coding.

“There are more to health care professions than doctor and nurse,” said Jennifer Johnston, the program manager.

HEY also includes a college success class in its curriculum.

Past field trips have included going to University of Washington- Seattle and Renton Technical College.

To qualify, you or your family can’t make more than 200 percent of the federal poverty level.

The selection process is completely random. “For every three that apply, two get in,” said Johnston. There is only space for 20 students.

To sign up, text or call 206.643.9624, email kenyah@nhwa.org, or sign up at this website https://www.seakingwdc.org/hey-cohort.

Classes begin June 29. Johnston said she recommends applying by June 15 because the paperwork takes some time.

Classes are from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday.

Ten years ago, the federal government set up funding to move people living in poverty into living wage health care jobs.

“I imagine it was needed now more than it was back then,” Johnston said.

Washington got two grants from the Health Professions Opportunity Grant which was the federal funding program set up by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Washington then gave the money to the Workforce Development Council which set up the HEY program through Highline.

If the coronavirus outbreak forces HEY to be rescheduled or cancelled, Johnston said they may schedule the program for later in the year or have the program be virtual where they schedule days for students to come to campus in small groups.

“It’s a really cool opportunity for people who haven’t had the opportunity to explore,” said Johnston. “People get to meet (other) people from different backgrounds from their own.”