Continuing in a tradition of excellence, the Farmington High School HOSA Club and bio-medical program sent three of their finest to compete in the National Leadership Conference on June 23-24 at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. This year, two students walked away finishing in the top 10 in their field.
For senior Kimberly Ramos and junior Addy Hall, a return trip to the national tournament had both walking away with an impressive finish.
Ramos scored a sixth place finish in Biomedical Laboratory Science competition while Hall scored an impressive fourth place finish in the Job Seeking Skills competition.
For Ramos, the competition was in two stages. The first required her to take a test, and the second was an evaluation of her lab skills.
“The test was on basic biology and genetic engineering,” Ramos said. “A lot of the information we cover in the Bio-Med program. For example, last year we made E.coli glow by adding DNA to it. I also have a text book that I have used for the past couple of years.”
When it came to her second competition, Ramos said she was required to demonstrate her lab skills.
“During the second round, they had me first put on lab equipment, gloves and goggles,” Ramos said. “Then I had to identify lab equipment. I had to write down the name and use.”
Doing genetic experiments is nothing new to Ramos or Hall. According to the two, last year their class made anti-biotic resistant E.coli.
“We added strains from several different branches of E.coli together,” Hall said. “We wound up making an E.coli that was resistant to penicillin and streptomycin.”
For Hall, who marked her third trip to the national competition, she went to with what she knows best - job seeking skills.
“It was the same basic thing as last year,” Hall said. “We had to make a resume and a cover letter for a job we were in training or actually qualified for. Luckily, being in Bio-Med training program, I can actually say I am in training for many things.”
During her competition, Hall had to present a cover letter, a resume and fill out an application before being interviewed by a panel. However, this year, the competition added another step that wasn’t in the program the previous two years.
“This year, we had to do an extra step,” Hall said. “We had to upload our cover letter and resume to 'Stem Premiere.' It is a website where you can also upload your grades and extra-curricular activities as well. You basically create your own STEM Premiere Page.”
Although they have both attended the national competition in the past, both said the event has not lost the excitement, and for both of the students, it also gave them an opportunity to do better than they had in the previous year.
“Since I did it the first year, I got all of the work out of the way,” Ramos said. “I know the information really well, and I wanted to see if I could get better.”
Hall pretty much mimicked Ramos’ thought. Her desire at national competition this year was to do better.
“This is my third time going to nationals,” Hall said. “Honestly, I want to win. I have seen I can do it. I have seen I can place, but I would really love to go back and finish at least in the top two, if not first.”
Both girls also added the skills they have learned with HOSA is something that will benefit them the rest of their lives.