COURTESY OF HAWAIIAN MISSION ACADEMY
Hawaiian Mission Academy seniors and their sponsors visited the Loma Linda University Medical Center as part of the annual senior class trip to California. Here, Jodie Tsai listens to a mannequin's chest as a medical center instructor supervises.
Seniors go on health trip
Mission Academy students use dummies to learn medical skills
Of all the exciting excursions Hawaiian Mission Academy offers -- the fun, educational marine biology trip for sophomores, the chorale retreat and spring tour, the senior class trip, class competitions at Camp Erdman -- the senior class trip is a perennial favorite. It is a time for the graduating class to bond with each other while enjoying theme parks and road trips and exploring college options.
Hawaiian Mission Academy
Ka 'Elele (The Messenger)
Cami Muller and Colleen Uechi
1438 Pensacola St.
Faculty and staff
HMA seniors and their sponsors travel to California annually. Amid the college visits, roller coasters, shopping and wild-animal park, one activity particularly stood out for the seniors this school year: a simulation lab at the Loma Linda University Medical Center, a sister institution of HMA and home to world-renowned Venom E.R. specialist Dr. Sean Bush.
At the simulation lab, seniors performed tasks that doctors and nurses carry out daily. Since the patients were mannequins, however, students did not have to worry about inflicting any fatal wounds. But the mannequins, ranging from a baby to an adult, were incredibly lifelike. Instructors can program them to simulate several different, real-life experiences such as getting a disease, a cut, an amputation or a burn. Even the skin of the dolls felt as soft as real human epidermis.
With a push of a button on the stethoscope, students could listen to the variations in speed and sound of a normal heart, of one having a heart attack, of one getting too much or too little blood and of one's suffering various other diseases.
"They sounded very real," said Trina Merrill. "I was utterly amazed at how lifelike those mannequins were."
Students also got to practice doing an intravenous drip on a computer. From a list they had to pick various tools they thought they would need for the procedure before poking the needle into the mannequin's arm. The computer scored the students' performances based on whether the students selected the right tools and whether they had correctly inserted the needle.
"It was a hands-on experience of what nurses actually do when they stick a needle into somebody," said Chad Yazawa, "and it was really accurate because if you moved the needle around, you could see that it was hurting the person."
The class also got to visit the embryology lab and the dental school. The embryology lab displayed real babies who had died either from abortion or birth defects, and the students got to see what fetuses look like at different stages of development. At the dental school, the group was able to watch dental students work on patients -- real ones, not mannequins.
A trip to the helipad followed. Perched high above the Loma Linda area, the students quickly brought out their cameras, eager to capture the panoramic view on memory cards.
The visit to the medical center was a great opportunity for students to see firsthand what a first-rate medical school is like. Seniors were impressed with the tour of the state-of-the-art facilities. As a result of the trip, some students are now considering attending the center.
"I'm definitely going to Loma Linda for dental school," said Ruby Santos, who could soon number among the many HMA alumni serving as doctors, nurses, dentists, physical therapists and other allied health professionals.
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HMA students help folks far beyond local borders
At Hawaiian Mission Academy, students usually participate in a variety of local community service projects throughout the year such as cleaning neighboring schools and visiting nursing homes. This year, however, HMA decided to go global with its Christmas service project.
Reaching beyond its community's borders, HMA raised $861.35 for ADRA, the Adventist Development and Relief Agency International, which "invests in the potential of (those in need) through community development initiatives targeting food security, economic development, primary health and basic education," according to the agency's Web site.
Through ADRA, students supported a number of unconventional projects: live goats for families in Third World countries, education for a child in Brazil, building a school in the Congo, helping a teen stop smoking in Madagascar, a warm blanket for a disaster survivor, and live chickens for families in China.
Student association President Esther Tak's original Christmas project idea involved each homeroom filling a shoe box with necessities, which would then be sent to families in Third World countries. High shipping costs for the boxes, however, prompted a search for a different project.
Science teacher Kate Lewis suggested another idea: Lewis was sent ADRA's 2007 Christmas catalog from her sister, who works for ADRA. Tak decided to try it.
COURTESY OF HAWAIIAN MISSION ACADEMY
Mari Cabbat, second from left, and Kaliko Lee point to Thailand, site of their Christmas gift donation, as Tyler Len, left, and Robert Reiber look on.
The project was introduced to homeroom students, who embraced it. English teacher Jane Cheeseman's homeroom bought a live goat and several live chickens for families. Bible instructor Lemar Sandiford's homeroom raised funds to feed malnourished elderly people in Kyrgyzstan.
Sophomore Mari Cabbat's homeroom chose a project that would save a teenage girl in Thailand from sexual exploitation.
"It's good to know that she doesn't have to be out on the streets," said Cabbat. "Instead, she'll get books and an education, which will help her get a job to help support her family."
Lewis' homeroom raised a significant amount, which was divided between medical and disaster relief projects. "(HMA) gave life-changing gifts such as medicine, food, slippers and education that people all around the world need to survive," Lewis said.
The Christmas spirit of thoughtfulness and giving definitely pervaded HMA, and it showed in the students' and faculty's alacrity in giving of themselves for the betterment of others. Homeroom faculty advisers also participated by matching the amount the students raised, which ranged from $25 to $100.
Lewis summed it up best regarding this year's Christmas project. "Each student was able to be a part of changing the world one life at a time," she said. "That's what Christmas is all about."
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"If you could travel either forward or backward in time, which would you do and why?"
"I'd travel to the future so I can find out how I'm going to turn out."
"I'd go back to my seventh-grade year when I became more involved with life."
"I would travel forward because I'm interested in seeing what technological and medical advances humanity will make."
"I'd like to return to the past so I could start all over."
"I'd go back in time so I could fix all of my mistakes and bad choices."
"I'd travel to the future to see what trials and problems I'd go through and return to the present to prevent and prepare for what is coming."
"I'd go back in time so I could invest in the stock market and become a multitrillionaire."
"I'd go back in time to say things that I meant to say but never did or to do the things I should have done but never got the chance to."