On November 29th and 30th, Ms. Elizabeth’s 7th and 8th grade science classes visited the nearby Kaiser Permanente Rainier Medical Center. Orca 8th graders Qasim Mohamed, Kamal Aden, and Yaewan Mulugeta wrote the following piece:
We were learning about the human body and the brain, so Ms. Elizabeth said that we’re going to go to the clinic to learn more. Before we went, we talked about how we were going to meet an MD, a Community Resources Specialist, a Physician’s Assistant, and a Nurse. As a warm-up, we had to write down a couple questions for the staff, and we drew the human brain and what was in it.
The clinic was small, and the exam rooms were very small, but the people were kind.
I was expecting it to be louder in the clinic, with babies crying and all that, but the experience was peaceful and they answered our questions very clearly. They were straight-up and they didn’t hesitate. Usually when I go to the doctor’s, I don’t really see any Black people in the place, but today I saw three Black people working there. I feel like there are a lot of Black people who actually want to become doctors and lawyers, but they’re not given the chance. That’s unfair, so we need to stand up for each other. I think that the country is becoming better and better, so things are changing, but it’s taking a really long time. Racism still continues, and it takes a lot of time to take that in, and once you start thinking about that you can’t stop. If I focus on my education, I don’t care if I’m Black or not, I have a chance.
Here are some of the awesome questions that students asked to the panel of clinic staff at the end of the tour:
How long did it take you to get started on your career? – Kamal
How do you all feel as women in medicine? – Heaven
Why are most doctors white and do you think that’s going to change? – Yaewan
What’s a community resource specialist and what would happen if the clinic didn’t have one? – Ms. Elizabeth
Check out what the clinic posted about the field trip here: Students Visiting Rainier Medical Center Learn About Health and Diversity.