Future medical workers explore career opportunities at Emergency Medical Expo

The annual event hosted by Arrowhead Regional Medical Center provided students with interactions and resources to pursue careers in the medical field


Misael Terriquez

The Colton High HEAL Pathway was joined by a few other students for a field trip to the annual Emergency Medical Expo on May 18 at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center.

Colton, CA—Yesterday, Arrowhead Regional Medical Center hosted its 10th annual Emergency Medical Expo. Forty students, led by HEAL adviser Kristin Griffith, took a field trip to the event to learn more about career opportunities and participate in activities focused on emergency medicine.

Colton’s 40 students, most of whom are members of the site’s HEAL Pathway, visited a variety of information booths, ranging from REACH, a medical response helicopter company, to organizations like the Inland Valley SWAT Department.

Natalie Lopez and Irma Romero Hernandez enjoy time in the medical chopper during the Emergency Medical Expo. (Kristin Griffith)

“Today we want to recognize the first responders, cops, paramedics, and firefighters,” said Michael Neeki, Director of Clinical Research and Tactical Medicine at the Regional Center. Their goal with the event was to bring awareness about jobs and careers to the community.

Students learned about amazing people like Elyse Kidwell, a flight nurse, and Marissa DeLeon, a flight paramedic. Their jobs involve transporting people in critical care to places where they can get help. 

“I think the hardest part of this job is losing the people we’re trying to save,” said DeLeon.

Colton senior Helena Ramirez enjoyed the trip. “I thought it was really informative for anyone looking to get in the medical field of work,” she said.

Colton students also participated in a live simulation conducted by the Inland Valley SWAT team. They learned how to apply medical triage with a simulated mannequin.

Participating students engaged in a triage simulation using mannequins at one interactive booth. (Misael Terriquez)

There were also two live demonstrations showing how the police Narcotics division uses their K-9 police dogs to look for drugs and electronics. They explained that dogs learn this because they train them by associating the smell of contraband with toys. Once the dog gets the job done, they’re rewarded with a treat. A dog’s sense of smell is 100,000 times greater than a humans.

The Fire Department also demonstrated how they break down a car within a few minutes during emergency situations. This demonstration proved to be both exciting and popular.

Colton students felt refreshed to have these new ideas about career paths in their community, 

“I learned a lot of useful things,” said junior Dimitrius De La Torre.

Junior Arianna Hernandez thought the same. “It was cool learning all these new concepts!”