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UW Camp Creates Opportunities for Minority, Low-Income Students

Monday September 13, 2010
Campers Rachalle Sandoval, left, and Jacki Okullu practice nursing skills in the lab during Nurse Camp.
Campers Rachalle Sandoval, left, and Jacki Okullu practice nursing skills in the lab during Nurse Camp.
(Photos courtesy of University of Washington School)
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The University of Washington School of Nursing hosted Nurse Camp from July 12-16 on its Seattle campus, allowing underprivileged and underrepresented high school sophomores and juniors the opportunity to explore nursing.

The free day camp’s main goal is to provide a pipeline to college for minority and low-income students in the Puget Sound area. The camp received more than 100 applications this year, according to a news release, and 24 students were accepted.


Students and volunteers at Nurse Camp at the University of Washington School of Nursing.
“Nurse Camp opens the door to all areas of nursing and other medical disciplines that nurses are involved with,” said volunteer Genevieve Hamilton, a program coordinator in the psychosocial and community health department.

The campers, 22 of whom are minority students, including two men, attended a presentation on community health nursing by speaker Julie Ward, a 2009 UW graduate, at the UW Farm, where students used organic ingredients to make pizza in the farm’s cob oven while discussing the importance of health and wellness in their lives and future careers.


Student Brittney Griggs (left) poses with Gayle Crawford, RN. Griggs spent a morning shawdowing Crawford as part of Nurse Camp.
“I want to teach [healthy lifestyle] habits to other people,” said Tammy Do, who will be a senior this fall at Nova High School in Seattle. “I want patients to better themselves and their lives. I feel like everyone should have the knowledge of nursing.”

Other activities included first-day crash courses on first aid, CPR, HIPAA, hand-washing and infection control.


Students Brenda Solis, from left, Karissa Sanchez, Susan Okullu, Alexandra Kim, Mariann dela Montanye and Jay Seo create an organic pizza lunch at the UW Farm.
The campers also shadowed nurses at the University of Washington Medical Center, practiced nurse skills in the Learning Lab and discovered nurse specialties. On the final day, attendees discussed applying to college and understanding financial aid.

“The hope is that they get to see nursing in a variety of roles that will engage their interest to become a nurse of the future,” said Lauren Cline, RN, MN, clinical nurse educator, nurse staff development, UWMC.