First BHS HOSA Competition
On March 15th, 2018, the Bainbridge Island HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) team set of to be the first ever attendees from Bainbridge Island to compete in the State HOSA Leadership Conference in Spokane, Washington. To get to compete in the competition on a state level for most events, team members must pass a round one test taken in mid-February. Once the preliminary test was passed, they could go on to compete in a round two test at the state competition in Spokane. Some of the team members competed in events that had both their round one and round two tests at the state competition so they did not know if they had passed or not when they made the six hour journey to Eastern Washington and some team members didn’t pass their round one tests, but came anyway to get a first hand experience of what the competition was like for future reference.
In addition to the competitive events, which were scattered throughout the day, there were also lectures and educational seminars which teams members were welcome to sit in on when they weren’t competing. The topics covered in the seminars ranged from trauma nurses talking about some of their patients that they had seen throughout the years, to college professors who taught philosophy speaking about medical ethics and the bounds of doctor patient confidentiality. All the topics however, were relevant to the overall mission of the competition which was to focus on the applied skills that are important to future health professionals of America.
Out of the ten BHS students that competed in one or more events, junior Marianne Milander placed both first in Veterinary Science and fourth in Medical Math, senior Jesse Thiele placed first in Health Career Photography, junior Maddy Vogl placed first in Clinical Speciality, and junior Sam Gerlach placed second in Dental Science. All these team members who placed in the top five in their respective events will continue to compete at the international level coming up in Dallas, Texas from the 27th to the 30th of June.
There are over 30 different categories that team members can choose to compete in through HOSA, and each of those categories has varied requirements of knowledge and skills needed. There are also many events that are team events, such as biomedical debate and forensic science, which require collaboration and all members involved to study and participate in the event. To study for an event, competitors usually have many resources available to them. In addition to the event guidelines provided to them by HOSA, there are suggested books to read, documents and essays to take an in depth look at, and even practice tests in the form of quizlets that previous students used for studying.
Professionalism is greatly valued at HOSA and competitors are required to always follow a strict dress code and a code of conduct. Failure to comply to the standards of the HOSA code results in docked points and can even result in disqualification of teams from competition. The goal of this is to prepare HOSA participants for the professional world of the health occupational fields that they are planning on for their future.
Although this was the first year that BHS competed in HOSA on a state level, many of the team members did very well in their respective categories and Bainbridge High School has already begun making a name for itself in the HOSA world. Next year, the team will be more prepared due to their newly gained knowledge of what competing at a state level entails and how to better study for it. In addition to the new reputation of the BHS HOSA chapter, the club is looking to expand even more next year and has already begun designing a team sweatshirt as well as creating a design to submit for the state pin that international competitors traditionally trade for pins from different states.