BEND,Ore. - Bend's Marshall High School has added four new academies to its curriculum this year, and one involves a health academy that provides students with a simulation learning experience.
The new medical health academy provides Marshall students with a simulation learning experience of different health occupations. Some courses offered in the program include health occupations, first aid and CPR, sports medicine and wilderness training.
"We learn by doing, and they retain that much more when they're able to use all of their senses," said Heather Johnson, medical health academy instructor. "Touching, feeling, hearing, seeing -- everything is happening and obviously there is more brain retention with that."
The learning experience is solely in the hands of the students, and each day they are faced with a new scenario.
One student says the class is fun but also teaches important information.
"The class is kind of fun, because we get to play with toys every day, but also learn about your vital signs, your body and understanding it more," said Bruno Rojas. "In terms of what the class actually does, it gives us a chance to go to the hospital and that's really an experience that can lead you to going into the medical route."
On Wednesdays, students will go to St. Charles Bend to observe and participate in a real hospital setting.
In addition to the educational benefits, students learn how to take care of themselves and their loved ones.
"Even just taking my own pulse, I could never do that before," Autumn Carson said. "If I feel like I am stressed out or something is going on, I can take my pulse here (at the wrist) or take it here (on the neck). I can monitor how I'm feeling and it can really help me just calm down, just knowing what's going on with your body."
The $7 million bond approved by Bend-La Pine Schools voters allowed Marshall High to redesign and transform the building adding the health program. It's the only school that offers a simulation program.
With a closer look into a variety of career opportunities, students are more likely to consider higher education, and this program also allows them to graduate from high school with college credits.