Lower Richland Health Careers Academy


Erica Davis


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Mid-Carolina AHEC, Inc Health Careers Program

Erica Davis, Health Careers Program Coordinator

Overview of 2015-2016 Academic Year

Background Information

Since 1972, the South Carolina Area Health Education Consortium (AHEC) has been assisting minority and underserved students to explore health careers.  This long term commitment has been based on AHEC’s awareness that the under representation of racial and ethnic minorities in our state’s health care workforce significantly contributes to disparities in the health status and access to health care for some of SC’s most vulnerable residents. 

Mid-Carolina AHEC, Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization and one of four regional centers statewide. As a member of SC AHEC, we are committed to the systems mission and aims.


To improve the quality and accessibility of health care for the communities of South Carolina through a system of community-academic partnerships whose central purpose is the recruitment, education, and retention of primary health care providers.


To be a model integrated and collaborative educational system that builds the capacity for optimal health in South Carolina

Health Careers Academy Purpose

Fundamentally, the purpose of the Health Careers Academy is to increase the number of students, especially minority and disadvantaged students, entering the health professions in South Carolina.   However, the evidence-based HCA curriculum is also designed to promote resiliency, improve overall academic success, and foster a sense of purpose in the student participants.   It provides students with a practical link between academic studies and preparation for participation in the workforce.

Health Careers Academy Goals

The South Carolina AHEC offers the Health Careers Academy (HCA) for high school students. The HCA activities promote academic success, career development and personal growth for students. The HCA also helps families understand that the path to becoming a health professional begins in high school.

The HCA provides exploration into health careers and prepares students for the rigors of healthcare training programs through activities that focus on communication, math and science. The HCA offers academic opportunities such as college admissions information, SAT/ACT resources, college tours, standardized test prep, hands on clinical skills trainings, and summer enrichment programs.

The HCA also provides student advising and mentoring sessions. Parental involvement sessions are provided for parents to learn more about financial aid options and strategies to help their children strive to become future healthcare providers in South Carolina.

Participants will have the opportunity to join the Mid-Carolina AHEC, Inc. Health Careers Academy Facebook page that is used to disseminate information regarding up coming events, any upcoming scholarships, financial aid information, and to facilitate lively discussions.  Participants will also be invited to interact in Social Networking Events, which allows students to interact with other students who come from the same background and are interested in the same profession, as well as meet with prominent Health Care Professionals from the community.

                                         Specific Modules Topics by Grade Level

Ninth Grade Modules

Career Introduction/Recruitment



Cultural Competence

Personal Appearance & Characteristics

Medical Terminology


AHEC U Courses

HIPAA Certification

Tenth Grade Modules

Career Exploration: The Clusters

Abstract Writing


Study Skills

SAT/ACT Introduction

Medical Terminology



CPR/First AID/AED Certification

Eleventh Grade Modules

Leadership & Learning

Vulnerable Populations

Ethical & Legal Issues

Health Career Exploration

Healthcare Skills

Medical Terminology


Blood Borne Pathogen Certification

Twelfth Grade Modules

Resume Writing/Interviewing Skills

Personal History/College 101

Human Anatomy

Senior Capstone Project

Medical Terminology


AHEC U Courses

OSHA Certifications


High School Objectives

9th Grade:

  • Introduction to health careers and medical terminology.
  • Participate in personal character development, aptitude testing and training to interact with people from different cultures.
  • Students will be required to participate in 25 hours community service throughout the year

10th Grade:

  • Enhance writing skills and explore scientific research.
  • Further explore and expand knowledge about health career options and medical terminology.
  • Develop the personal character, conduct, and resiliency needed to become a successful heath career professional.
  • Students will be required to participate in 25 hours of community service throughout the year

11th Grade:

  • Explore populations who are vulnerable to specific diseases.
  • Discuss legal and ethical issues unique to healthcare.
  • Learn more about applied health services, health education and disease prevention, emergency preparedness, leadership roles and other expectations of healthcare professionals.
  • Students will be required to participate in 25 hours of community service throughout the year

12th Grade:

  • Explore human anatomy and physiology. Other activities continue to prepare students to stay on track to achieve their personal goals of joining the healthcare workforce.
  • Resume writing
  • Students will participate in career specific shadowing opportunities, one on one mentor.
  • Students will be required to participate in 25 hours of community service throughout the year that will matriculate into their Capstone Project


Students who receive a grade of 85 or higher will be awarded ½ Carnegie Unit per year towards a health science and work-based credit if approved by their school administrator.  The South Carolina AHEC has been endorsed to award a maximum of two Carnegie units for each student who successfully completes all four years of the Academy.

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