Suncoast High Schoolers are getting a jump start on medical training this week at Manatee Technical College’s Health Career’s camp.

What do you want to be when you grow up? Every high schooler has heard this question before, and the health careers camp is helping students like Andrew Carrillo find an answer.

“The thing that really draws me to the medical field is the job security of it,” Carrillo said. “Because there is always going to be jobs needed, and there is always going to be doctors and nurses. The medical field is very vast as well, so there is like no limit to what I can do.”

Manoela Dos Santos decided to come to the camp after watching her mom study Pharmacy Tech.

“Helping her,” Dos Santos said. “Throughout the year, and learning about the different things that she does kind of got me interested in wanting to find out more about pharmacy and the other career opportunities in health care.”

Dental Assisting Instructor Brenda Ware says these careers are in demand.

“Most of our graduates that go out are hired before they even graduate,” Ware said. “So when they are in their internship, externship rotations, they’re already hired before we even get them out of the program.”

Over the week, campers spend half a day with each program.

“Dental, Paramedic, EMT,” Ware said. “Firefighting, all of the programs that we offer here at the campuses.”

They’re learning about some of the necessary parts of the job like the proper way to wash your hands.

And it’s all hands-on.

“They were in the paramedic/EMT and they learned how to intubate a patient,” Ware said. “Tomorrow, they’re going to get they’re hands-on CPR, so they’ll be getting a CPR Certificate.”

Andrew Carrillo says the hands-on activities make it easier to learn.

“And it’s just a lot funner,” Carrillo said. “I’d rather be doing a dissection then reading a book on dissection, or watching a Youtube video about it. It’s just a lot more fun and interactive, and it makes you hold onto the information better.”

The camp is funded through a grant from the Gulfcoast South Area Health Education Center.