Health majors, medical professionals educate students on campus during health exposition

Amanda Pollard

Sacramento State students were provided with job, networking and volunteering opportunities when medical professionals came together during the university’s first health exposition.

Students visited tables set up by organizations such as Kaiser, Veterans Affairs, the Sac State Health Center and other health-related groups to obtain information on the different medical fields and health care available to students.

Dentists, physical therapists, surgeons and a Sac State physician gave presentations at the exposition to educate students on medical careers and how to enter the medical field.

Senior exercise science major and Associated Students Inc. Health and Human Services Director Kevin Chun was pleased with the outcome of the event. Chun said the attendees of the exposition were able acquire essential information on the health-care field.

“We did accomplish our goals to promote health awareness and enhance the students’ knowledge base; I was satisfied with that,” Chun said.

Chun said the most popular presentation was the collaboration between orthopedic surgeon Alan Hirahira and physical therapist Kyle Yamashiro. The presentation was the most successful because it was the only collaboration between two medical professionals, Chun said.

During the presentation, Hirahira focused on surgery and shoulder injuries, while Yamashiro educated students on shoulder rehabilitation and physical therapy as a career.

John Jow, a dentist from Veterans Affairs, presented students with information on careers available in dentistry, such as surgeons, dentists and dental assistants. Students learned how to apply for and complete the schooling required for these jobs and what each job entailed.

Dr. Gabrielle Gaspar, a physician from Sac State, gave a presentation on the future of health care by presenting students with information on the newest technology in the medical field.

In addition to the various presentations, the exposition offered students a chance to network with professionals from institutions, such as Kaiser Health Care and Mercy Catholic Health Care West. The networking enabled students to develop contacts in their prospective fields.

Freshman pre-nursing major Garrett Welsh said he felt like the exposition offered opportunities for students who don’t have enough knowledge on the specifics of the medical field they want to enter.

“There are professionals here from so many different specialties and with so much knowledge and they are really excited to educate students about it,” Welsh said.

Members from the Health and Nutrition Club at Sac State worked at a table focused on the use of drugs, such as alcohol and tobacco, in hopes of inspiring a safe spring break by providing information on the dangers of drug usage.

Personal trainers from the Sacramento gym Health Fitness gave information to students interested in better physical health or the field of therapy. Students learned about better dieting and exercise routines. They were advised to get a minimum of 20 to 30 minutes of cardio workout a day to keep a healthy heart and fast metabolism.

Vice President for the Student Health Advisory Committee Steve Irving, who helped coordinate the event, said he wanted to spread information about the health center and make sure students are knowledgeable of the services available to them. Irving said students are often unaware of the free x-rays, visits to the doctor and consultations with optometrists and psychiatrists that are available to them.

The Student Health Advisory Committee is the bridge of communication between the student body and the health center at Sac State. Irving said there aren’t enough students informed of the many options available for health care.

“The biggest thing right now is to get to the students at orientation. It’s not a common part of orientation to stop by the health center, so some students are getting to their junior year and just finding out they get free massages and cheap medicine,” Irving said.

Because of the exposition, the committee was able to acquire seven new members and publicize its mission to the student body.

Amanda Pollard can be reached at [email protected].