“Being able to ask questions, gain new knowledge and participate in a variety of simulations over Zoom has made me excited for the future and more sure that I want to pursue a career in the medical field,” said Lexi Centeno, from Illinois. 

Funding and the future

While Health Adventure Quest and Summer Health Institute were free to participants, the College of Health Solutions committed significant faculty and staff time as well as out-of-pocket funds to deliver these programs. A generous donation from the Central Arizona Area Health Education Center, one of the five regional programs under the Arizona Area Health Education Centers’ umbrella, covered other expenses and established a new relationship with the college for future K–12 collaboration.  

In addition to new connections with regional health partners, the success of the virtual summer programs has organizers thinking of new ways to reach an even wider K–12 audience with quality health education year round. For example, the Summer Health Institute course modules will be made available to high school seniors this fall, and the Health Adventure Quest recorded sessions are being offered as free resources for K–8 students in partnership with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Phoenix, Valley of the Sun YMCA and Mountain Park Health Center, who expressed interest in using the health content to expand their existing curricula.

Kelly Krause

Media and communications manager, College of Health Solutions