Throughout the year, our residents have the opportunity to participate in community outreach activities in greater Los Angeles. These events energize and inspire residents, giving them the chance to see how anesthesiology impacts the community at large and to spark the curiosity of the next generation of medical students.
Alongside the California Society of Anesthesiology (CSA), we are supporting an innovative four-year curriculum in biomedical education, developed by Project Lead the Way (PLTW), a national nonprofit organization that trains teachers and provides resources to “engage students, one medical mystery at a time.”Last fall, our residents and faculty participated in a launch event to celebrate a partnership to support science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education at three high schools in the Los Angeles area. Residents Sophia Poorsattar, MD, Nikki Yin, MD, and Christopher Morando, MD, and faculty members Christine Nguyen-Buckley, MD, and Karen Sibert, MD, FASA, joined teachers, and students at the Venice High School kickoff.
Our department is lending support to PLTW by sending residents to visit classrooms, talk to the students about anesthesiology and healthcare careers, and give hands-on demonstrations of airway rescue techniques. Students from the three high schools – El Segundo High School, Venice High School, and the Girls Academic Leadership Academy – will visit the UCLA Simulation Center during the spring semester.
Our residents brought along “Harvey,” a teaching mannequin to the launch event, and Dr. Yin guided one student through how to use a laryngoscope to perform endotracheal intubation. The audience applauded when the student connected the ambu bag to the endotracheal tube, and the mannequin’s lungs inflated. “You saved him!” said CSA Executive Director David Butler.
View the event video below and read more about it in our In the News feature story.
Sierra Williams, a student at the Girls Academic Leadership Academy (GALA) in Los Angeles successfully intubated her “patient” – a mannequin – in preparation for an imaginary surgery, surrounded by her classmates and supervised by UCLA anesthesiology resident Nikki Yin, MD. The experience provided Sierra and her classmates with a vivid sense of what physician anesthesiologists do, and of how the biomedical sciences apply to healthcare overall.
CSA provides overall program coordination and underwrites the cost of annual teacher training; PLTW provides the curriculum and offers comprehensive professional development during the summer. The UCLA anesthesiology department coordinates classroom presentations by residents, and will host a field trip for each program at the UCLA Simulation Center. Assemblymember Ridley-Thomas and his staff provide broad-based community and public support.
After her successful intubation, the future Dr. Williams informed her classmates, “Before today, I was planning to be a cardiologist. Now I am going to be an anesthesiologist!” After the bell rang and the students left the room, Dr. Christina T. Nguyen commented, “This is why we all got into medicine…to help people.”
Top: Dr. Sam Hong teaches a student to intubate.
Left: Drs. Christopher Morando, Sophia Poorsattar, Christine Nguyen-Buckley, and Nikki Yin at Venice High School
Below: Drs. Yin and Nguyen with students at GALA.