Thursday, April 25 marked the annual Wausau Chamber of Commerce sponsored Business Expo at the Patriot Center in Rothschild. The medical assistant program students of Globe University’s Wausau campus were there to offer their skills and knowledge.The students performed blood pressure checks for event patrons. The Globe University booth acted as a screening area for students to seat individuals, introduce themselves, perform supervised blood pressure checks and interact as if in a clinic setting. Students recorded the blood pressure and pulse on a form and handed it to the willing participants. The interaction was an excellent opportunity for students to get a feel for what it will be like to work in a clinic setting.
When the flow of patrons slowed down, Kerry Miller-Mouzon, medical assistant program chair, forced the students to step outside their comfort zones and walk among the crowd asking if people would like their vitals taken as a free service for attending the Business Expo. In addition, the students were allowed to roam the aisles and introduce themselves to the health care-related vendors to network with potential future employers.
“I really enjoyed all the people that were there and getting their blood pressure done,” said Amber Rhyner, current medical assistant student. “I did not know how they would react if I could not answer a question, but everyone I helped was very understanding of me being a student and wanted to know more about the program.”
Each student wrote a reflection paper on their experience, and also researched the signs, symptoms and effects of high blood pressure. The hope was that in addition to making contacts with the public, the students would also learn more about the dangers of high blood pressure, a disease they will become very familiar with when working in a clinic setting.
“This experience was great,” Rhyner concluded. “I think it was a great idea to go out into the community and do this. I was able to meet the supervisor in charge of my externship and learned how to better listen through my stethoscope. It was a pleasure to be a part of this.”