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IN SESSION: Portsmouth schools, EVMS team up for medical camp

Twenty rising Portsmouth High School students spent the past two weeks at the 'Health Science Academy' hosted by EVMS.

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — Some Portsmouth High School students aren’t taking the summer off from learning.

Twenty rising 9th and 10th-grade students from three different Portsmouth Public Schools spent the past two weeks at the “Health Science Academy” hosted by Eastern Virginia Medical School.

The 10-day camp from July 22 to August 2 included hands-on learning activities and various guest lectures from professionals in the medical field, including doctors, medical students, and research scientists. 

The topics included: introduction to suturing, stop the bleed training, introduction to ultrasound, bystander CPR, and a deeper look at dementia.

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“I think it’s good for them to hear about all the different ways to get into schools of health profession and medical school, that it’s not always high school, medical school, and residency. Sometimes there’s a different track that gets you there as well," said EVMS Camp Coordinator Dr. Julie Stoner.

Rising freshman Alyssa Hurley said the "Health Science Academy" will help prepare her for a future career in medicine.

“I wanna be a general surgeon, so I’m going to need to have a lot of schooling," Hurley said. “It’s definitely going to help me in my process to be somebody in healthcare."

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Organizers said they wanted to create a camp that promoted career awareness for the Portsmouth students. 

“They’re getting a much clearer understanding that when you go into med school, you don’t always have to graduate as an MD," said Program Specialist Dan Lewandowski. "They’re getting a much clearer understanding of what are the careers involved in health sciences.”

EVMS hopes to expand the program next summer.