MASH program for local students begins sixth year


BULLHEAD CITY – Sixteen students from five area high schools in three states have started a rigorous two-week medical job shadowing program at both Bullhead City area hospitals.  


For the sixth consecutive year, students are being exposed to different health care careers, from the traditional paths of physicians and nursing to allied health, staff support and administrative positions. The MASH program – Multiple Avenues of Successful Health Care – started in 2013 in conjunction with Valley View Medical Center in Ft. Mohave, Western Arizona Regional Medical Center in Bullhead City and the Colorado River Union High School District. Students from the Clark County School District and Mohave Accelerated Learning Center joined the program in 2014, and the Needles Unified School District is participating for the fourth consecutive year.

Students from Laughlin, Mohave, Needles and River Valley high schools, plus MALC, applied. The 16 selected are primarily incoming seniors. All will have 80 hours of thorough orientation and job shadowing.

When they graduate later this month, the students will have learned how to draw and type blood and received their CPR certifications. They will also have spent time in an operating room, kitchens, medical accounting, housekeeping, plant operations and many more departments.

A longstanding goal is for some of the students to return to the Tri-State area after college to launch healthcare careers.

Sponsors this year are Mohave Electric Cooperative, the BHHS Legacy Foundation, Silly Cactus and Hospice Compassus, whose executive director, Cindy Head, RN, is overseeing this year’s program.

In order to be considered, students needed to have a minimum 3.0 grade point average, have already taken and passed science and algebra with a B or better, complete a 400-word essay and provide three letters of recommendation.

Each hospital is hosting eight students with one alternate. Many of the students have a 4.0 or better GPA.

The Lake Havasu Partnership for Economic Development and Havasu Regional Medical Center created the first Tri-State area MASH program in 2012 after the initial concept was developed in Willcox at Northern Cochise Community Hospital.

HRMC will also host another separate MASH program this year in Lake Havasu City.

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