Allied Health students shadow zoo vets, visit St. Jude

AMORY – Amory Vocational Center’s Allied Health II class recently visited the Memphis Zoo and St. Jude Hospital. The students attended a class at the zoo entitled “Wild Careers” as part of their unit on veterinary medicine.

A veterinary assistant talked with the class about the numerous veterinary careers available at the zoo ranging from vets to research and animal husbandry. Students then had the opportunity to touch and interact with three different animals – a snake, a bird, and a chinchilla. After the class, students enjoyed touring the zoo.

Later that afternoon, the students were taken on a tour of St. Jude Children’s Hospital. They learned that St. Jude was foundered by entertainer Danny Thomas in 1962 on the premise that “no child should die in the dawn of life.” When St. Jude opened its doors, survival rate for children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, the most common type of childhood cancer, was 4 percent. With discoveries in research and treatments at St. Jude, today’s cure rate is 94 percent.

Students learned that:

- St. Jude treats children from all 50 states, as well as 70 foreign countries.

- All medically-eligible patients are accepted for treatment at St. Jude and are treated without regard to the family’s ability to pay.

- St. Jude is the only pediatric research center in the United States where families are never asked to pay. St. Jude provides housing, transportation and meals for the families of the children being treated.

- The daily operating budget is $1.6 million.

- The different types of diseases that are treated at St. Jude

- Children from birth to age 18 are eligible for treatment.

The trip was made possible by a grant from Quality Education Foundation (QEF).

According to Jolayne Parchman, Allied Health Instructor, “I have never taken my kids on this trip before, but it was wonderful. The zoo was a lot of fun, but St. Jude really opened the eyes of these kids. I think they count their blessings more now. St. Jude is an amazing place. Every parent’s worse nightmare would be to hear that their child has a catastrophic illness, but how great it is to have St. Jude at our back door. They do amazing things there.”

Plans are already being made to take next year’s Allied Health seniors on the trip.

“It was a great trip,” said Parchman. “We are also very fortunate to have QEF to fund activities like these for our students.”

Read more: monroe360.com – Allied Health students shadow zoo vets visit St Jude

Chris Wilson/Monroe Journal