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Explore Health Careers
Explore Health Careers

Free Health Career Information Sessions

Free Health Career Information Sessions at SRJC - Call (707) 527-4809 to reserve your place.

Training Resources

Linking You To Top Training & Education - Short-term training, college coursework, volunteer and summer jobs, job shadowing at local health-care providers, and more.
American Red Cross
SRJC Health Science Department
SSU Nursing Program
Empire College
Dominican College
Sonoma County Job Link
University of San Francisco

Student Success Stories

Health Careers Pipeline Program

Teresa Hurtado-Diaz
Teresa Hurtado-Diaz has been a HOPE Center student since fall 2009. She is a cancer survivor and admits having been through some hard times, but with perseverance and dedication she believes everything is possible. Throughout her journey, Teresa has been an honors student and graduated from SRJC in spring 2011 with an Associates of Science Degree in Biology. She transferred to Sonoma State University in fall 2011, where she is majoring in Biology. Her future goals are to attend medical school and become a Pediatric Oncologist and she hopes to perform cancer research.

This past summer, Teresa received an internship opportunity with the UCSF Research Family Cancer Center where she worked along side Leukemia researchers. She was also invited to deliver a speech of her journey as a college student at the Circle of Honor Reception held at SRJC this summer. In her spare time, Teresa volunteers with the “Be the Match Program.” She is a speaker and a bone marrow recruiter. In the future, Teresa would like to take a vacation to travel all around Mexico to visit the beaches and the archeological cites. Her favorite dish is the Mole Oaxaqueño, “especially the one my mom makes” she said.

The Health Careers Pipeline program was a key tool within her educational goals that expanded her knowledge of the many different careers in the health care industry. When we asked Teresa how the HCP program has contributed to her educational success, she replied, “I had the chance to meet amazing people that have changed my life. Thanks to counselor Luz Navarrette I had the opportunity to attend UCSF to work on a research internship. She is an amazing person and I consider her a role model. The program also helps students when they are having difficulties with their classes and gives students the opportunity to go on field trips to visit different college campuses. It also provides financial support after students successfully complete the requirements. I received great advice from mentors that kept me on the right educational and personal pathways. I'm so thankful for the opportunity to be part of this program. It definitely made a difference and impact in my life.”

Is a Health Career Right for You?

Before embarking on a health career path, take a few minutes to think about your own abilities, needs, and hopes. Here are some useful questions to ask yourself:

Do You like to Deal With People?

One of the first questions you should ask yourself is how much you want to deal with people. For instance, it is important for nurses, pediatricians, and occupational therapists to have a warm and caring personality. By contrast, other health careers (like medical lab technology, pathology, or medical illustration) involve little or no personal contract with patients.

Are You Comfortable With Science?

Many (but not all) health careers require you to be a strong science student. All health careers involve some laboratory science, and some programs demand intensive work in the hard sciences (i.e., chemistry, physics, and biology).

Are You Prepared to Keep Up with Developments in Your Field?

Good health care practitioners are committed to giving their patients the best care available. That means, in order to keep up with the latest developments in your field, you’ll need to continue studying and learning throughout your career.

Are You Comfortable in a Health Care Setting?

Are you prepared to deal with a wide variety of people? In many (but not all) health careers, you may spend much of your time in the company of sick, disabled, or dying people. This will become increasingly common in the near future, as the large “Baby Boomer” generation enters old age.

In terms of a clinical setting, you might work in a HMO, community health center, mobile clinic, long-term care facility, private practice office, or even a patient’s home.

You may opt to work in a bustling city or a sleepy suburb – and if you do, you’ll be meeting a legitimate need. However, there’s an urgent need for health practitioners in medically under-served areas, which often are in far flung rural communities or inner-city neighborhoods.

If you would prefer less direct contact with patients, there are numerous other health-related work settings – including pharmacies, laboratories, medical libraries, and corporate, non-profit or government offices, to name just a few. You might be part of a small staff or a huge organization, working at the national, regional, state or local level. The possibilities in this field are almost endless.

Are You a Team Player?

Health care is increasingly becoming a group activity, in which a patient’s recovery depends on how well each member of the health care team performs his or her specific function – and how well they communicate and collaborate with one another. Even dentists – 70% of whom work in a solo private practice –usually supervise and work closely with several staff members.

What Lifestyle Do You Envision?

How do you feel about facing life-and-death situations on a daily basis? Some (though not all) health careers involve coping with emergencies, working extremely long hours, and shouldering heavy responsibility. What kind of lifestyle do you envision? How much time do you hope to spend at work, versus at home?

You need to be realistic with yourself: If you don’t mind long workdays and are good at handling stress, go ahead – pursue an ER-style career. But if you’d rather have a job with regular hours and fewer medical crises, there are plenty of other fulfilling health careers.

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