Summer programs immerse students in medicine

Summer Podiatry Preview Program
For two days in June, nine college students experienced DMU from the perspective of a Doctor of Podiatric Medical student in our fourth annual Summer Podiatry Preview Program. We host this annual program to expose more students to the podiatric profession and also to Des Moines University.

The students experienced DMU through hands-on laboratory demonstrations in simulation, anatomy, surgery, HPL, SPAL and research. They also learned how to suture on pigs’ feet and shadowed our own podiatric medical students in the DMU Foot and Ankle Clinic. A key aspect of the program is the opportunity for these potential students to meet our current students and learn from them what a DMU education is all about.

It’s important to refuel wisely after a busy program such as the Summer Podiatry Preview, so we entertained our guests at Zombie Burger, a local favorite of our students (but only on a diet cheat day).

This two-day visit program is an excellent opportunity for students to learn more about podiatric medicine and DMU. Applications for the 2013 Summer Podiatry Preview Program will open in early 2013. We look forward to hosting another great group of students.

Health PASS program
The Health Professions Advanced Summer Scholars, or Health P.A.S.S. program, was developed in 2009 to increase awareness of DMU programs among prospective students from backgrounds that are underrepresented in health care, including underrepresented minority, economically disadvantaged and educationally disadvantaged students.

Health PASS 2012
Health PASS 2012 group shot at Gray’s Lake

More than 75 applications were received for the 2012 program, and we were honored to welcome 10 select students in July. They spent three weeks on campus experiencing life from the perspectives of DMU students. The students shadowed clinicians in our Physical Therapy Clinic, Foot and Ankle Clinic, Family Medicine Clinic and Osteopathic Manual Medicine Clinic. They also attended lectures on the topic of diabetes, by professors from across the DMU curriculum. They learned to suture on pigs’ feet, apply casts to each other’s legs, dissect cadavers in Gross Anatomy, administer emergency care in the Simulation Lab, perform a physical exam in physical diagnosis, and perform physical therapy exercises.

The fun was not restricted to the Des Moines University campus, as the students explored Iowa’s capital city in its entirety. “Batman” in IMAX 3D, the Downtown Farmers’ Market, Jordan Creek Mall, the Pappajohn Sculpture Park, historic East Village, Adventureland and more kept them busy. Although wellness is a key value of DMU, we exercised a bit of freedom with the concept when we took them to dinner at Jethro’s BBQ and Zombie Burger. The students showed some restraint and could recognize these restaurants for their modern Des Moines landmark status as they devoured their meals (multi-meat and/or deep-fried) in the spirit of experiencing the city to the fullest.

Back on campus, the Health P.A.S.S. students wrapped up their three-week stay with mock medical school interviews and presentations. At the end of the program, we were sad to see our students depart, but we hope to see them again as applicants to any of DMU’s programs.

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