Estudiantes de Esperanza College ganan medallas de oro en sus eventos competitivos en la Conferencia Estatal de Liderazgo de los Futuros Profesionales de la Salud (HOSA SLC por sus siglas en inglés).

One of the biggest pleasures that we can get as an educator is to see your students work hard for a goal and succeed. I was blessed with that pleasure last week when I took a group of my students at Esperanza College to the HOSA Future Health Professionals State Leadership Conference acting as one of the group’s advisors. I want to honor and celebrate those students here.

HOSA is a club to develop and prepare students for their future. Students play an active role making decisions for the group. This particular group of students chose to join HOSA at Esperanza College last Fall to learn new things, grow as leaders, gain confidence and learn how to communicate and work together as a team.

One of the students, Ashley, indicates that what she likes the most about the club is planning the activities and the smoothie sales as fundraisers. On the other hand, Anthony enjoys the entire process from brainstorming to making their ideas a reality.

Delegación de Esperanza College incluyendo a las dos consejeras del grupo, la profesora Mashaal Syed, al frente a la izquierda y yo, al frente a la mano derecha.

At times, the group has had difference of opinions. Professor Mashaal Syed, also an advisor of the club mentions that “it is through the moments of contention that we are able to witness personal improvement, being able to express yourself in a group not only requires a certain level of confidence, but also courage to go against the grain. Both are qualities of a strong leader.”

Los estudiantes participando de un taller donde trataban a un paciente virtual.

In the months that we have worked as a team, the students have accomplished much. They defined group goals, fundraised, studied the subject matter to prepare for their competitive events and participated in community service. More important yet, they have had personal growth. For example, Katherine wants to be a part of a medical team so that she can help others. Her advice to other youth is that “the key to success is perseverance and determination.” She recommends “believe in yourself and with the help of God, you can achieve anything in life.”

Estudiantes de Esperanza College ganan medallas de oro en sus eventos competitivos en la Conferencia Estatal de Liderazgo de los Futuros Profesionales de la Salud (HOSA SLC por sus siglas en inglés).

For Anayes, her favorite part of the HOSA club so far has been to attend and participate in the conference. “I was able to attend cool symposiums, compete and overall be in a new environment.”

Talentos de Esperanza College: Anthony Garcia (arriba izquierda), Anayes De la Cruz (arriba derecha), Katherine Aguilar (centro izquierda), Ashley Guerrero (centro derecha), Wellington Machaquiza (abajo izquierda), Jasmin DeJesus (abajo derecha) (Foto: Cortesia)

The Esperanza delegation included six students and two advisors. The following students won gold medals in their competitive events: Anayes De la Cruz (Human Growth and Development), Katherine Aguilar (Medical Math), Jasmin De Jesus (Medical Spelling), Ashley Guerrero (Medical Terminology), Anthony García (Nutrition), and Wellington Machaquiza (Pharmacology).

In the past years I have had the honor to serve as the Director of STEM and Medical Assisting at Esperanza College. I am an advocate for our Esperanza students, always looking for opportunities for them to expand their horizons and become leaders in the community. As I have mentioned in previous columns, we need more representation of Latino and other minority students in the health, science, and STEM careers. Anthony mentioned that “it meant a lot to me to represent Esperanza College at HOSA SLC and being a Hispanic participating in a white-dominated event. I felt good to represent my culture and show we are equals.” For Ashley, representing the college was important since “now more people will know how passionate students from Esperanza College are about our dreams and goals for the future. I believe that youth in our Philadelphia community will be inspired to join our school and become a part of HOSA.”

Let us continue encouraging our youth to participate in these opportunities so that we can increase diversity. We invite any interested student to look for more information about Esperanza College and the programs we offer.

I am extremely proud of these six Esperanza College students and their success at this state competition. They are now invited to participate in the competition at the international level. I agree with my co-advisor, professor Mashaal when she indicates that she is “excited to see what the next steps have in store for us.” Our HOSA group is the future not only for our community, but also for our country.

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