Medical Careers Academy hosts First Annual Mentor Mixer


To provide students with information on medical careers and colleges, the San Gabriel High School Medical Careers Academy held its first Mentor Mixer on November 29, from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm in the Multipurpose Room at the school. Ten professionals representing nursing, optometry, health care management, and home health care, and five medical students from Western University were the mentors for the evening. Over 50 students attended the event.


The night’s program included group introductions, networking with light appetizers, and an appreciation ceremony for the mentors.  Topics of discussion were the importance of doing well in school, what to expect for higher education (education pathway), salary wages, education requirements for jobs, job descriptions, job requirements, and professional advice, said Academy Coordinator Amy Wu.


Senior Jessica Campos appreciated the opportunity to meet professionals in the medical field. “[The mixer] helped out all the students with unanswered questions. The speakers were really nice and helpful, full of information. I learned you can't be afraid to ask questions. One mentor simply told me ‘Do not give up!’ She said you will not sleep [in medical school], to spend a lot of time in school, studying and doing homework. But in the end it's all worth it!"

The mentors were Aurleen Andrews, Retired Director of Nursing in Labor and Delivery, SGMC; Melita Azaula, RN, Supervisor, Chino Valley Convalescent; Claudia Campos: AA, Front Office Medical Assistant; Leila Ingwersen, LVN, Triage Nurse, Glendale Pediatrics; Daniel Krall, O.D., Clinical Director of Primary Care Linden Optometry; Rosie Mo, O.D.: Optometrist; Alyssa Nguyen, Manager of HealthCare Services at Nicholas Holdings, LLC; Anna Nguyen, RN Labor and Deliver, SGMC; Karen Nguyen, RN Labor and Delivery, SGMC, and Josephine Rubios, LVN, Home Health Aide. The Western University medical students were Bryant Tran, Wei Jen Chu, Caroline Pham, Dan Phuong Nguyen, and Hesper Pham.

Cynthia Okimura, CTE teacher, facilitated the evening and was pleased with the success of the event. “I want to thank the mentors for volunteering their time to spend with our students. The mentors really gave such wonderful advice that opened up students’ views on the medical career choices.


Founded in 2009, the Medical Careers Academy provides health career focused curriculum and offers real world experience and exposure to the medical field through mentorships and internships. MCA students intern at various medical offices and have a Medical Terminology course articulated with Mt. Sac, which gives three units of college credit for high school students.  More information about MCA can be found at .  



Photo Caption:  Medical Careers Academy students (left to right) Anayeli Merino, Lillian Flores, and Rocio Roman receive career advice from Leila Ingwersen, LVN, a triage nurse with Glendale Pediatrics.



Posted on 1/21/13