The inaugural session of the Cardiology Summer Academy just ended. It gave seniors from the Young Women’s Leadership Academy Charter School a chance to experience the world of the heart through real-life experiences at Northwestern Memorial’s Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute. The program’s success was noted in an article by the Chicago Tribune.
The week-long summer experience for the small group of high school students is one of the science academies run by the Women’s Health Science Program at the Feinberg School of Medicine. The Summer Academy is designed to educate female high school students who are considering pursuing a career in science or medicine and to teach them about cardiology and cardiovascular health.
Megan Faurot is the director of education programs for the Institute for Women’s Health Research at Feinberg. She is also in charge of the Oncofertility Saturday Academy. “My goal is to create engaging and authentic learning experiences for high school girls to inspire and prepare them to successfully pursue careers in science and medicine,” she said.
The students participate in different activities such as watching cardiac surgery, performing dissections and getting CPR certified. Another major goal of the program is to increase the students’ knowledge of their own heart health so the curriculum also includes daily personal training sessions, lectures on heart disease and prevention and heart-healthy cooking demonstrations and meals.