Jane Harvey was one of two Roseburg High School students who attended the Congress of Future Medical Leaders in Boston, Massachusettes last June.
The event hosted 4,500 high school students across the country, all who had a GPA of 3.5 or better, for a three-day meeting to motivate and prepare them for a career in the medical field.
“I think getting a really hands-on experience with all of those people ... it was really cool to see that pathway and see even though it’s going to be hard right now and for the next couple of years in school, that eventually it will pay off,” Harvey said.
Students at the event, put on by the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists, listened to lectures from Nobel laureates and Medal of Science winners as well as patient testimonies and inspirational speakers, said Lisa Rossi, a spokeswoman for the National Leadership Academies.
“We do an awful lot of work with these students on inspiration and motivation, because, often the really bright students in school don’t always get the attention they really could use and deserve,” Rossi said.
The event live-streamed a surgery taking place in Virginia as well. The surgeon was able to answer questions in real-time, Rossi said.
Harvey said one of her favorite speakers was Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman.
“Aly Raisman was there, which was really cool because she’s an Olympic gymnast and she was a really good inspirational speaker for all of us, even though we might not be interested in what she does, it was pretty cool,” Harvey said.
Carmen Blandin Tarleton, the first full-face transplant recipient, spoke at the event as well.
“She gave us a really good inspirational speech about how we need to be compassionate and she talked about the medical side of her procedure and then the mental part and how she got through all of that,” Harvey said. “It was really cool to listen to how she moved through such a hard time in her life and kept going.”
Harvey said she’s still deciding which career she wants to pursue in the medical field: a nurse, nurse practitioner or a doctor.
“It’s really a rewarding job to be able to help people and make people feel better and help them through their most vulnerable times in their lives,” Harvey said. “I think that’s really cool opportunity that not many other jobs have.”
Harvey said she’s considering which university she wants to attend. Linfield College, Stanford and Johns Hopkins University are on her list.
Haylee Schultz, a rising junior at Roseburg High School, also attended the conference.