High school seniors Kristina Herder (Mona Shores High School), Stephanie Vasquez (Muskegon High School), and Madison Woods (Western Michigan Christian High School) were among 100 students throughout the state to be selected to participate in the OsteoCHAMPS program at Michigan State University’s College of Medicine (MSU-COM) in July. OsteoCHAMPS is a nine-day exploration into what it’s like to attend medical school.
Students participated in a challenging academic curriculum taught by MSU faculty in anatomy, biochemistry, medical research, and writing, as well as leadership and team building activities. The week wasn’t all work, though. Students also enjoyed a dance, ice skating, and a Lansing Lugnuts game.
“MSU selected 17 students from West Michigan with about 100 students from around the state attending,” shared Health Science Academy Instructor Kathy Andrews. She added, “Students must complete a lengthy application process in order to be selected–it is very competitive!”
OsteoCHAMPS is the brainchild of Dr. Margaret Aguwa, Associate Dean Emeritus and OsteoCHAMPS Founder at Michigan State University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine. Aguwa, who is originally from Nigeria, was alarmed at the lack of minority, economically and academically disadvantaged, and other nontraditional college students in the osteopathic school.
In 2000, Aguwa dreamed up the idea of OsteoCHAMPS — a program to introduce students to the wonders and rigors of medicine while they were still in high school, with the hopes they’d want to pursue osteopathy as a profession. She identified two areas to start recruiting students: Detroit and Muskegon County. A year later, the Osteopathic Foundation of West Michigan signed on as a sponsor.
As of 2017, more than 500 high school juniors and seniors successfully completed the summer academic enrichment program. Herder, Vasquez and Woods are beginning their final year in the Health Science Academy program at the Muskegon Area Career Tech Center.
To view the photos, visit OsteoCHAMPS google drive here!