News Release

March 28, 2007

Contact: Jane Shaskan, 860-679-4777

A Taste of Medicine for High School Students

Towns Throughout Connecticut Participating

FARMINGTON, CONN. – High school students from around the state are currently taking part in a eight-week program aimed at educating and encouraging students interested in pursuing careers in medicine, dental medicine or the biological sciences.

“High School Mini Medical/Dental School” includes weekly two-hour lectures and demonstrations by faculty from the UConn School of Medicine and the School of Dental Medicine on topics such as emergency psychiatry, pharmacology, molecular disease, immunology, neurology, cancer, forensic dental medicine, and other subjects. Junior and senior high school students are selected by guidance counselors and science teachers to attend the program.

“Students attending program have already expressed an interest in a health related career. What we strive to do is nurture and expand that interest,” said Marja Hurley, M.D., associate dean and director of the Office of Health Career Opportunity Programs.

Of the 72 students attending the program, 60 are attending at the Health Center and come from Avon, Bristol, Farmington, Glastonbury, Simsbury, Tolland, and Windsor high schools; Watkinson School, Weaver High School, and University High School of Science and Engineering in Hartford; Waterbury Magnet Arts School and Kennedy High School in Waterbury; and Hall High School in West Hartford. The remaining 12 participate at Bulkeley High School in Hartford via live webcast.

The classes meet Thursdays, with the exception of April 19, from 4 to 6 p.m. and end April 26 with presentations about combined degree programs by Keat Sanford, Ph.D., assistant dean UConn School of Medicine, and Edward Thibodeau, M.D., assistant dean UConn School of Dental Medicine. The students will also be awarded diplomas and a reception will follow in Keller Lobby.

The program is sponsored by the Department of Health Career Opportunity Programs at UConn Health Center.

UConn Health includes the schools of medicine and dental medicine, the UConn Medical Group, University Dentists, and John Dempsey Hospital. Home to Bioscience Connecticut, UConn Health pursues a mission of providing outstanding health care education in an environment of exemplary patient care, research and public service. More information about UConn Health is available at

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