Harris School Externs Add Value at St. Christopher’s Hospital

The business school’s externship program receives praise

Upper Darby, PA. There is no substitute for hands-on learning when it comes to career training. Students enrolled in the medical assistant programs at Harris School of Business get just this kind of experiential learning through the school’s externship program.

Since 2010, St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in Philadelphia, PA has partnered with the Upper Darby campus of the Harris School to match up medical assistant students with externship opportunities at the hospital.

“This is a win-win situation where the students gain valuable clinical experience while the hospital receives the students’ time and skills for free,” explains Anel Melendez, Externship Coordinator (pictured left). “The on-the-job experience enhances the students’ resumes, and in some cases, the externship even results in a job offer for the student.”

This spring, St. Christopher’s held an honorary luncheon to show appreciation for the Harris School’s externship program. The hospital gave special honors to Ms. Melendez for her outstanding service to the hospital in providing well-qualified externs and following up with their progress. Six students received recognition for their work: Monica Hopkins, Marilyn Reyes, Ashley Salgado, Sovichea Sok, Samantha Barron, and Davina Blue.

During their externships, students shadow doctors and nurses in three of the units at St. Christopher’s: the short procedures unit, adolescent medicine, and the sick clinic. The externship placement is 180 hours, and students are cross-trained in both administrative and clinical matters. They gain experience with phlebotomy, blood injections, and other medical assistant procedures.

“We are very proud of the hard work and technical skills of our students,” says Ms. Melendez. “The externship with St. Christopher’s has been a wonderful opportunity for Harris students to shine.”

Since starting her work at Harris School in 2010, Ms. Melendez has developed externship programs with other area hospitals, including St. Luke’s, Lankenau, Chestnut Hill, Bryn Mawr, Mercy-Fitzgerald, and the Rothman Institute.

Harris School of Business has a tradition of providing career-focused education in the fields of allied health and business management. The Upper Darby Campus offers medical assistant programs and dental assistant training.

As one of the region’s accredited technical schools, Harris School of Business operates seven campuses in the Delaware Valley with a wide range of programs. For a complete listing of programs, or for more information about the Harris School of Business, please call 1-800-510-7920 or visit www.harrisschool.edu.

Contact: Crystal Williams, Registrar
Harris School of Business
20 South 69th Street
Upper Darby, PA  19082
Tel: 484-463-3800; Fax: 484-463-3810