6 students qualify to compete at International HOSA conference

Adam Flowers, Staff Reporter

The Gering HOSA program recently competed at state and they qualified six students to the National HOSA conference on June 19 – 22 in Orlando, FL.

  HOSA sponsor, Pearl Johnson, was especially pleased with how all of the students performed at the conference.

  “This year I was just hoping we’d have, I guess in my mind I was thinking hopefully three,” said Johnson. “I was really surprised that we had as many place as they did. They did a great job.”

  One student, junior Doug Meyers, placed 1st in Pharmacology and 2nd in Pharmacy Science.

  “I stayed up until 4 o’clock in the morning studying everything in my packet, every quizlet, and I ended up only needing to know one skill out of six for that day.” said Meyers. This is his first year participating in HOSA.

  “After I found out I won, I was stunned and in disbelief.”

  In the future, Meyers plans on being a pharmacist through the military

  This was the second year junior Alannah Ventura had attended the state conference. Having two years of experience, she understood more of what she was going into this year.

  “I looked up a lot of YouTube videos because they give you packets and the packets have pages of what the possible labs could be, but you don’t know which one it’s going to be, so you just look up how to do all of [the labs],” said Ventura. “When you get there, you know what to do.”

  Ventura competed in Veterinary Science and placed 1st overall. She also competed in EMT.

  Johnson agreed that every one of the students had more experience this year.

  “Last year was our first year,” said Johnson. “[The students] put more study time in, the job shadowed more this year. They took that extra step and they went out on their own and did more.”

  Along with Meyers and Ventura, Gering had six other students place highly at the competition. Junior Callie Cushing placed 2nd in Medical Assisting, senior Heather Davis placed 2nd in Veterinary Science, senior Logan Moravec placed 3rd in Physical Therapy, senior Kassadie Rahmig placed 3rd in Veterinary Science, junior Anaie Ayala placed 4th in Dental Science, junior Jassie Kaur placed 4th in Physical Therapy, and sophomore Tessa Brunner placed 4th in Veterinary Science. The top three in each event have instant qualification to attend Nationals.

  Johnson is hoping to see at least a couple students place highly this year at Nationals.

  “At Nationals, you have people from all over the United States. Our kids get to mingle with all of these other kids and it’s a very busy time because they have a lot of different sessions there. We’ll be there five days, and during that time, they’ll attend different sessions and then they’ll do their competition.”

  Along with Johnson, the students that qualified for Nationals are also hoping to do very well at the conference.

  “Now that I know what [Nationals] is like and I know what to study, my goals are just to do a lot better and see if I can place.” said Ventura.