LCPS students get hands-on look into Building Learning Opportunities and Options in Medical Sciences (BLOOM)
More than 100 LCPS sixth-grade students participated in the Building Learning Opportunities and Options in Medical Sciences (BLOOM) in November. LCPS partnered with Inova, the Loudoun Educational Foundation, Loudoun Fire and Rescue, and Future King's Founder/Executive Director, Dr. Arik King, to create a bridge between middle school and high-quality career exploration. The hands-on day provided a glimpse into medical science careers for students from six middle schools: Harper Park Middle, River Bend Middle, Seneca Ridge, Simpson Middle, Smart’s Mill Middle, Sterling Middle.
BLOOM offered students a chance to expand their thinking about likely career paths, challenging when, where, how, and what they learn. The event gave students access to real-world stories, information from experts in the field, and hands-on activities around what a career in health and medical sciences provides.
Interactive and dynamic experiences engaged students on the Inova Loudoun Mobile Health Bus alongside Loudoun County Fire and Rescue Emergency Medical Services and with King's virtual reality environments, tools, and opportunities. The career exploration provided thoughtful reflection and self-examination for students while in school and helped connect the learning they engage in daily to future possible successes.
Renee Dawson, LCPS' Assistant Director of Career and Technical Education, Computer Science and Community Connection, said “ The goal of BLOOM is to reenforce learning concepts without replicating the school day.” Workforce data that show careers in health and medical sciences are increasing and in high demand informed the need for and creation of the well-received event.
"BLOOM makes career planning and exploration accessible to students who may not understand their options as they make important life decisions." LCPS Superintendent Dr. Scott Zielger shared, "When students have early experiences, they can connect career goals with current learning and begin understanding how their strengths and preferences map onto future possibilities."