For three days in June, Associate Professor of Athletic Training/Exercise Sports Science Roger Kollock led the Jr. STRETCHED — STudents Reaching Excellence Through Collaboration with Higher EDucation — summer camp at Oxley College of Health Sciences. Thirty-seven students took part in the experience. This program was a partnership between The University of Tulsa, Hillcrest Healthcare System, St. Francis Health System, and Ascension St. John Medical Center.
“Jr. STRETCHED is about helping students reach their full potential,” said Kollock. “This immersive camp experience is designed to expose minority students to a variety of health care professions. Jr. STRETCHED is not only an excellent opportunity for students to learn more about careers in health care, but also to meet and speak to practicing clinicians from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds.”
Thirty-seven students had an opportunity to sample and envision their possible futures as college students and health care professionals. They haled from five high schools across Tulsa and area: Will Rogers, Kiefer High School, Jenks, East Central and Union.
A vision for learning and for life
Many high school students feel lost when it comes to the next chapters of their lives, explained Kollock. “This camp gives them a teaser trailer of what their lives could be and even provides further assistance into the future.”
“Through this experience, I broadened my knowledge of the many positions within the medical world,” commented one of the participants. “I wouldn’t have had all these wonderful encounters if it wasn’t for your hard work and dedication.”
According to another: “The Jr. STRETCHED program benefited and changed me a lot. I learned a lot and now I really want to go into the medical field. Thank you for everything and the opportunity!”
Attendees’ parents also benefited from the camp because their children gained insight into potential educational and career pathways. “Rather than simply talking about what they hope their child would do in life, this camp is a chance to show rather than merely tell,” said Kollock. In the words of one appreciative parent: “Dr. Kollock, your lasting influence is tangible and obvious on shaping participants’ daily activities, outlook on their future, their dedication to academically excel and their social and leadership skills.”
After the camp experience and before the students graduate from high school, they will have an opportunity to take part in one-on-one mentoring facilitated by their school and TU faculty and students who will answer their questions and help guide them in the process of applying to college.
For more information about Jr. STRETCHED, contact Roger Kollock at firstname.lastname@example.org. And check out Oxley College of Health Sciences’ many fascinating and rewarding pathways to career fulfillment.