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Healthcare Career Exploration Program

Healthcare Career Exploration Program

The Healthcare Career Exploration Program (HCEP) is a partnership of Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Penn State College of Medicine and local high schools. The purpose of the program is to support rising seniors from surrounding community high schools who are interested in healthcare careers through observation; interactive seminars; problem-based learning sessions; and shadowing opportunities. 

Hershey Medical Center and College of Medicine employees are an integral part of the chosen students’ learning experience by acting as supervisors and learning facilitators throughout the experience.  The goal is to enrich the students’ current approach to acquiring knowledge in career exploration endeavors, to enhance critical thinking skills, and to provide important information for educational options and career paths in medicine.

The deadline for applications and recommendations for 2019 is Feb. 22, 2019. Participants will be selected by March 22, 2019. 

Apply today

Students must be incoming high school seniors and attend one of the following schools: 

  • Central Dauphin
  • Central Dauphin East
  • Harrisburg
  • Harrisburg Sci-Tech
  • Hershey
  • Lower Dauphin
  • Middletown
  • Steelton-Highspire

The HCEP is designed to:

  • Enable students to develop career readiness beyond high school
  • Provide exposure to health science-related career options
  • Enable students to increase their level of comfort in a health care environment
  • Provide opportunities to shadow healthcare professionals in their work setting
  • Explore and strengthen skills and resources for health career development
  • Create a pipeline of interested students into the medical field

The HCEP allows high school students the opportunity to interact with healthcare professionals in a real-work environment and to explore various healthcare professions. Students derive the following benefits from the program: 

  • Learn about job possibilities within the healthcare field
  • Discuss real-life issues with healthcare professionals
  • Experience the workplace first-hand
  • Formulate future goals for a career in healthcare
  • Receive mentorship that assists students to make better decisions about their futures
  • Develop networking skills within the health care system
  • Develop relationships with adults in the student’s chosen career area
Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
Penn State Children's Hospital
Penn State Cancer Institute
Penn State