Health Science Connection for Secondary & Post-Secondary Educators

You have been referred to our e-newsletter because you work with students who may be interested in a healthcare career.

Montana AHEC/ORH supports efforts to improve healthcare across Montana. One of our 3 key objectives is to help students explore careers in healthcare. We hope that this newsletter may become a great resource for you and your students. This month the AHEC newsletter will focus on National Train Your Brain Day that takes place every year on October 13th!

National Train Your Brain Day
"This day was created to encourage everyone to expand and 'exercise' their brain and use more of it's potential capacity. There are many different ways to 'exercise' your mind and improve your cognitive skills such as reading, word puzzles, number games, brain teasers, trivia games, riddles and etc.. Learning something new is another 'exercise' that is a benefit to everyone's brain on National Train Your Brain Day (as well as any other day)." National Day Calendar
How to Stay Focused: Train Your Brain
"Our brains are finely attuned to distraction, so today's digital environment makes it especially hard to focus. 'Distractions signal that something has changed,' says David Rock, co-founder of theNeuroLeadership Institute and author of Your Brain at Work (HarperCollins, 2009). 'A distraction is an alert  says, ''Orient your attention here now; this could be dangerous.'' The brain's reaction is automatic and virtually unstoppable.'" Entrepreneur

Psychiatrist selected to head MSU Center for Mental Health Research and Recovery
"A psychiatrist and scientist from one of the country's leading medical centers has been named the new director of Montana State University's Center for Mental Health Research and Recovery, or CMHRR." MSU News

Jump Start Your Dental Career in High School
Jumpstart Your Dental Career in High School - the second webinar in the ADEA Predental Student Webinar Series.

Please view the recorded webinar.

Receive tips and guidance from the experts about what you should be doing right now to prepare for an exciting career in dentistry. The panelists include a current dental student, dental school admissions officer, and recently graduated high school student.
Registering for this webinar will only take a minute, and it will take you one step further in your journey to a successful dental career!  Contact Shani Rich at for any questions.
What Were They Thinking Exploring Teenage Brain Development
This New York Times' lesson plan was created to introduce students to the adolescent brain. By the end of the lesson, students should be able to answer the lesson's guiding question: What implications does brain imaging research on teenagers have for reconsidering societal rules and responsibilities for this age group?

Neurology -
The following resources were developed for classroom use by high school biology teachers who participated in MCB-HHMI Outreach's Summer 2005 "Experimental Biology and Multimedia Workshop". This year's topic was "Neuroscience".
"Wiring" Your Brain
Use this lesson and student worksheet printable to reinforce comprehension of the student article "Wiring" Your Brain. Students decode scrambled sentences as an experiment in how the brain learns. Then, they answer critical-thinking questions that connect their findings to real-world situations. (First published 2013)

The National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health sets aside the third Thursday of every November - November 19 of 2015 - to celebrate National Rural Health Day. National Rural Health Day is an opportunity to "Celebrate the Power of Rural" by honoring the selfless, community-minded, "can do" spirit of that prevails in rural America. It also gives us a chance to bring to light the unique healthcare challenges that rural citizens face - and showcase the efforts of rural healthcare workers. 

In honor of National Rural Health day the Montana Office of Rural Health & Area Health Education Center is holding two fun contest for school aged children to help raise awareness about the importance of rural health!
Health Care Careers Interview Contest

Recognizing healthcare workers and giving students a chance to explore healthcare careers! 
In this competition, involving high school students and healthcare workers. We are asking high school students to;
  1. Identity a local healthcare professional you want to recognize
  2. Snap a photo of them in their working environment  
  3. Ask them the following questions:
    • What are the challenges of working in a rural community?
    • What are the benefits of working in a rural community?
  4. Record their answers
  5. Submit your photo and answers via email to us at 
**Please include the healthcare professional's name and organization they work for, your first and last name, school, and grade level and also tell us what career path you are most interested in.**

1st place - $50 Amazon Gift Card
2nd & 3rd place - $25 Amazon Gift Card 

Submission Deadline is November 5, 2015

Stay tuned for the display of our submissions and awards!!!
Rural Health Photo Contest

In this competition for students of all ages, we are asking that you snap a photo highlighting your favorite pastimes that keep you happy, healthy and active in your community!

1st place - $50 Amazon Gift Card
2nd & 3rd place - $25 Amazon Gift Card

Submission Deadline is November 5, 2015
Terms of Use
Contest winners will be notified on National Rural Health Day (November 19, 2015). If we are unable to reach the winner, the entry will be forfeited and the selection committee may choose a different winner. All photos will be posted on the RHI Facebook page.

By submitting a photo you agree to RHI's Terms of Use:

Images submitted must be royalty-free. By submitting a photo, you understand you give the rights and permission of the photo to be used by the RHI and AHEC offices.
Photos not meeting this requirement will not be eligible for prizes and will be disqualified from the National Rural Health Day Photo Contest.

We welcome new HOSA chapters this school year: Butte Central, Polson, Darby, and Troy.  We welcome new local advisors, Misty Cerise-Cunningham, Tammy Kelley, Caroline Ehmann, and Anita Winslow, as well as new advisors to existing chapters: Rob Truax (Great Falls), Rheanna Fultz (Charlo), Katie Meier (Billings Career Center), Linzi Napier (Flathead).  Thank you to advisors who chaperoned their students at one of the five Montana HOSA Fall Leadership Conferences hosted this month.
Fall Leadership Conferences offer an opportunity for new member orientation, leadership training, and advisor and student member networking. 

Conferences are scheduled for:

HOSA provides a unique program of leadership development, motivation, and recognition exclusively for secondary and collegiate students enrolled in health science education and biomedical science programs or have interests in pursuing careers in health professions.  HOSA is not a club for a few members. Rather, it is a powerful instructional tool which is integrated into the Health Science Education and health science related core curriculum and classroom. HOSA's mission is especially critical when considering the acute shortage of qualified workers for Montana's healthcare industry. The 2015 National HOSA theme is "LEAD," and our Montana students are the next generation of healthcare industry leaders.
If you are interested in starting a HOSA chapter at your high school, contact Martha Robertson,
More information at

2015 Summer MedStart Camps
These camps are designed for incoming high school Juniors/Seniors who are interested in exploring healthcare careers.  The camps provide numerous hands on activities, job shadows, and introduce students to college campus life. AHEC received over 90 scholarship applications and will be making selection and notifying applicants in the next two weeks. Additional information can also be accessed at: 

MedStart Helps Montana Teens Learn About Healthcare Careers
"Students often think of healthcare as being only doctors and nurses, and the MedStart program tries to break down that stereotype by educating students about the variety of careers available in the healthcare industry." KRTV

REACH is an acronym for Research and Explore Awesome Careers in Healthcare. The regional AHECs set up a partnership between local hospitals and high schools to provide students the opportunity to visit their local hospital and participate in hands-on activities in a variety of departments.

REACH Camp Schedules:

Western AHEC Region
  • October 22 - Charlo & Ronan @ St. Luke Community Healthcare
  • Nov. 4 - Superior, St. Regis, and Alberton @ Mineral Community Hospital
  • Nov. 5 - Eureka @ Kalispell Regional Medical Center
  • Nov. 17 & 18 - Missoula Big Sky High School Health Science Academy freshman at UM College of Health Professions & Biomedical
  • Nov. (TBA) - Troy and Libby High Schools @ Cabinet Peaks Hospital
North Eastern AHEC Region
  • October 15 - Glendive Medical Center
  • October 23 - Holy Rosary Healthcare
  • Nov. 11 - Sidney Health Center
Currently no schedules for:
North Central AHEC Region
South Central AHEC Region
Eastern AHEC Region                                     
In This Issue
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Please contact us with your comments, ideas, questions or projects you'd like to see highlighted in future issues of this e-newsletter. And thank you for the work you do every day to inspire and support public health initiatives and healthcare in Montana!


Renee Harris -
Montana Area Health Education Center (AHEC)