By Ruben Ruiz
During my time at STEM Academy of Hollywood, I have learned a lot about how Linked Learning schools benefit students. For instance, I recently attended the 12th Annual UC Davis Pre-Medical and Pre-Health Professions National Conference. The only high school students invited to participate were the top students in their career pathway classes, because this conference was only recommended for students interested in pursuing a career in the medical field. Because of the extra hours I put in my biomedical classes, I was one of the first to be invited to the conference.
At the conference, I learned about what I would need to do to achieve my ultimate goal –becoming a trauma surgeon. I know now that I’ll need an undergraduate degree in science, a medical degree, and then several years of professional training. The path I’ve chosen will be extremely difficult, but I’m already well on my way to success because of the head start I’ve gotten in the Biomedical Sciences pathway at STEM. Between my real-world internships, experience with the fundamental coursework, and professional skills I’ve developed, I’m already ahead of other students with the same goals, but without the Linked Learning experience.
I was also able to interact with UC Davis professors of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery at the conference. While talking with them, I not only learned about their experiences and observations, but I also told them about Linked Learning.
I am grateful for the incredible opportunity to meet with and learn from professionals and educators in the field I want to work in someday, and I wouldn’t have had this chance without the experience and skills I’ve gained from Linked Learning.