Navy Week Opens Door to Opportunities for Students
(April 23, 2010)
|SAN ANTONIO (NNS) -- Scientists from the Naval Medical
Research Unit (NMRUSA) discussed cutting-edge
biotechnologies such as cell and organ printing, and
opportunities in the Navy, with students at the Northside
Health Careers High School (HCHS) as part of San Antonio
|Cmdr. Mark Hofmann, left, commanding officer of Navy Operational Support Center, San Antonio, and Yeoman 1st Class Dana Gilbert, read a story to children at Carl Wanke Elementary School during San Antonio Navy Week
on April 16, 2010.
Cell and organ printing is computer-aided, jet
printer-based, 3D tissue-engineering of living human organs,
offering a possible solution to the organ transplantation
HCHS's curricula focuses primarily on health care. Although
a public school, students must apply for admission to a
limited number of spots.
The presentations offered students interested in pursuing
careers in the health professions a door to opportunities in
"My buzz word is options – you always want to have options
in life," said Capt. Vincent DeInnocentiis, NMRUSA
"I want to be a cardiologist," said 11th grader Michael
Collier, a student in the Diagnostics Services class, adding
that he decided on his career in the third grade.
He said listening to Navy scientists discuss their work was
"There are more branches to Navy medicine than I thought,"
said Collier. "I was always interested in the Navy, so now I
am seriously considering it."
"It's nice to know there are opportunities out there for
us," said Rebecca Moreno, also an 11th-grade student in the
Diagnostics Services class.
Moreno said she is interested in pursuing a career in
plastic surgery, perhaps in the Navy.
"Whether it's for combat or regular medical purposes,"
Moreno said, "it can change peoples lives and that's what I
want to do."
Navy medical research also helps change lives through
partnerships with high-volume trauma centers such as those
in Los Angeles County, the University of California, Davis
and in Baltimore, Md., where experience with military
medicine is used in the civilian world to treat patients
injured in street-level violence such as in gang wars,
"Things they found out we can use on the battlefield, and
things we see on the battlefield we bring back and they use
right away. It's a great avenue and collaboration with the
DeInnocentiis also said that he and his researchers'
presence on the HCHS campus is the start of a partnership
between his unit and the school that could lead toward
"Getting them exited about careers in Navy medicine, in math
and science – we're going to get them thinking and hopefully
going to college, becoming the next researcher – the next
person coming into the Navy."
Article and photo by Navy Chief MCS L.A. Shively
Navy Office of Community Outreach
Navy News Service
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