3 Ways Adtalem Helps High Schoolers Pursue Healthcare Careers

June 17, 2024
graduates from Chamberlain University taking a group photo

Torrance Taylor, second row and center, started a Bachelor of Science in Nursing while in high school. Here she celebrates graduation with fellow nursing students at LCMC Health.

With healthcare fields facing shortages, Adtalem inspires high school students to pursue them through a variety of scholarships, grants, and programs.  

At 20 years old, Torrance Taylor ’24 has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, a zero tuition balance, and a job lined up in her hometown of New Orleans at LCMC Health with patients who have brain injuries.

Torrange Taylor in her commencement regalia

“And I will be making a salary that will allow me financial freedom,” she adds. “I am grateful.”

Taylor’s gratitude is for the opportunity she received through Chamberlain University’s Navigate to Nursing Scholarship Program for high school students and the partnerships it has formed with the New Orleans Career Center and LCMC Health.

As part of Navigate to Nursing, Taylor completed five Chamberlain courses at no cost during her senior year at McDonogh 35 Senior High School while earning a medical assistant certification at New Orleans Career Center.

Taylor’s success in the Chamberlain Navigate to Nursing Scholarship program, which was launched in 2011, led to her being admitted into the BSN program, which can be completed in three years. 

Dual enrollment options are popular across the United States. According to the Department of Education, approximately 88% of high schools offer dual enrollment, and 34% of U.S. students take college courses in high school.

Through Chamberlain’s Called-to-Care Scholars Program, her tuition was covered by her pledge to work as a nurse for LCMC Health after her graduation in April. 

She couldn’t be happier to start her career. 

“What inspires me is seeing the change in patients, being able to see the progression of their hard work,” she says. “Knowing that I have helped to make their life better brings me joy.”

Her advice for other high school students considering this option? “Don’t squander any opportunity that comes your way, especially if you dream of being in the medical field,” she says. “You can do it! Be driven!” 

a student speaking on camera

Khaija Faulk, BSN ’23, was featured by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. With help from the Navigate to Nursing Scholarship, she completed her Chamberlain program at the university’s location in an Ochsner Health system facility, where she is now employed as a nurse.  

Scholarships for High School Graduates in St. Kitts and Nevis

Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine (RUSVM) is an integral part of the higher education landscape in St. Kitts and Nevis. But its focus is on graduate programs. To create opportunities for local high school graduates, RUSVM, with philanthropic support from Adtalem, offers several scholarships to attend Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College or the Nevis Sixth Form College.

The program has awarded 83 scholarships in its seven years, including 10 in 2023-2024 that were celebrated in an on-campus ceremony in March. This year’s recipients plan on studying a variety of topics from agriculture and natural sciences to law and geography.

Recipients also get to participate in hands-on activities at RUSVM. As part of a seven-week paid summer internship, they will attend sessions on careers in science, professionalism in the workplace, and resume writing. They will also create a community service event and present a project on sustainable development.

a scholarship winner speaking about their internship at RUSVM

Recipients of the RUSVM scholarship reflect on their internship experiences and aspirations for the future. 

Rae-Gean Jenkins, operations manager at RUSVM, has coordinated the program since its inception. She’s also a graduate of Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College (CFBC), where some of the students are currently studying.

“CFBC offers an important transitionary phase and a space where students have the opportunity to figure out what they want to do and better prepare for the world of work or further education,” she says.

Having that firsthand experience allows me to ensure we really provide students with an experience that will help to focus them, and in some instances open their minds to new possibilities.
a headshot of Rae-Gean Jenkins

Support for Future Health Professionals in Chicago

One of the pipelines for high school students into healthcare fields is HOSA–Future Health Professionals. It’s a global, student-led group with more than 5,000 chapters. In the Chicago Public Schools chapter, students in the Career and Technical Education Health Science program participate. They can get certified as a basic nursing assistant, EMT, or registered medical assistant.

HOSA supplements this with a variety of opportunities, from classroom activities to job shadowing, internships, and competitions where they can demonstrate what they’ve learned. In a continuation of its support for the Career and Technical Education Health Science program, Adtalem provided grant support in fiscal year 2023 to Children First Fund, the Chicago Public Schools Foundation, for students to attend the statewide HOSA tournament this spring.

“All students who participate in HOSA are interested in pursuing a career in health care,” says Beth Heckinger, Career and Technical Education cluster manager. “HOSA provides opportunities for them to dive deeper into a specialty such as veterinary science, dental science, physical therapy, and pharmacology.”  

65% of Gen Z students are worried about choosing the wrong postsecondary path, according to 2022 report from American Student Assistance and Jobs for the Future.

Heckinger also emphasizes that HOSA chapters are student-led. “Students who participate in HOSA take the lead in situations,” she says. “I’ve personally seen noticeable growth in confidence, problem-solving while being solutions-oriented, and greater comfort in weighing options and deciding on a solution, even if it involves taking risks.”

For more information, email the Adtalem Global Communications Team: adtalemmedia@adtalem.com.