A Day in the Life of a Health Occupations Student

Kayla Morey, Reporter

At Leominster High School CTEi students have a wide range of different things that they can do throughout their high school career. Whether that’s taking an AP Art class at the high school or choosing a trade at Leominster High School CTEi trade school, students are sure to find something that interests them at LHS and LHS CTEi.

The trade school has many trades ranging from Culinary Arts  to Electrical, and many in between. One of the shops that LHS CTEi offers is Health Occupations. In this shop a student will do many different things including working in the nearby nursing home, getting trained in first aid, CPR, earning a CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) license, and lots and lots of studying.

Senior year Health Occ students are placed in the community for on-site learning. I sat down with LHS Senior Health Occ student Mackenzie Spanner to see what she does when she is not in the classroom.

Mackenzie spends three periods of the day in Health Occ. On days 5,6,7 she is in the classroom studying and learning new things, but on days 1,2,3,4 she is at her clinical.

She takes traditional academic classes just like all of the other students including pre-calculus, Honors Senior English, Earth Science, and World History. But then she heads to clinical.

Last year, like all Juniors in Health Occ, she worked as a CNA at a local life care center in Leominster. She helped the residents get dressed, take showers, and she helped to feed them dinner. She also helped them with just daily activities that they might have on that certain day.

This year Mackenzie goes to Manilow’s Canine Playground for her clinical. One of the main reasons she choose a doggy daycare is because she hopes to work with animals in the future as perhaps a marine biologist or a zoologist.

She has many tasks through her time there, but the first thing she always does when she walks in is “say hi to all of the dogs.”

Mackenzie loves dogs so when she got the opportunity  to work at this doggy daycare she took it.

After Mackenzie is done saying hi to all of the dogs, she gets all of their crates ready for them to come back inside when they are done playing. She places a fresh blanket, bone, and bucket of water in each dog’s crate.

After that is all done she says it is time to wrangle all of the dogs in and put them in their crates which she says is “her least favorite part of her job.”

Once all of these crazy, rambunctious dogs are in their crates — it is time for their nap, and for them to wind down for a little bit.

Throughout the the rest of her time there, the dogs occasionally filter in and out to stretch their legs and use the bathroom.

Meanwhile Mackenzie is busy getting all of the dogs’ lunch ready for them to eat.

After that she cleans anything that needs to be cleaned.

Once all of her duties are done she usually spends the rest of her time playing with the dogs and giving them all the attention that they need.

She says that this is her favorite part about Health Occ. She loves the fact that she is not in the classroom 5 days a week. She like this hands-on activity, and looks forward to it each week. Who wouldn’t like to play with a bunch of cute dogs?

She says for any students who may be looking into possibly pursuing Health Occ as a trade in highschool to know that it is not all fun and games. It is a lot of work leading up to your senior year clinical , but in the end it is definitely worth it.  

Mackenzie Spanner