Twenty three MHS students competed in the 2021 South Dakota HOSA Competitive Event held at the Pentagon in Sioux Falls. They were accompanied by their adviser, Jenna Schlimme. The top three winners in each category move on to compete in the national competition. Schlimme says, “The national event will be virtual again this year, but if it had been held in person, it would have been at Disney World in Florida.”
First-place winners included: Siri Bien, dental terminology; Jessica VanPeursem, extemporaneous writing; and Madi Thue, prepared speaking.
Second-place winners included: Jessica Pillatzki, pharmacy science and Stella Wendland, medical spelling. Third-place winners included: Allison Leddy, prepared speaking; Mackenzie Michels, research poster; and Heidi Meyer, career photography.
Schlimme says the top-five winners were announced, but fourth and fifth place were not delineated. Top-five winners included: Jaylin Jonason, home health aid; Julia Wiik, health informatics; Alicia Taylor, medical law and ethics; Nadia Thue, researched persuasive writing and speaking; and Mariah Brandenburger, medical assisting.
Savannah Stengel, Hattie Muellenbach, and Alicia Taylor won first place in the Anatomy Tournament. They each also won an iPad! Allison Leddy, Shelby Lee, Madi Thue, and Jaylin Jonason took fourth place in the HOSA Bowl.
Schlimme was also announced as a winner. She was chosen as the 2021 HOSA advisor of the Year for South Dakota. Her Milbank chapter was also recognized and given an award for obtaining the second-highest increase in HOSA members this year.
Schlimme, who serves as the middle school and high school nurse, says she attributes the jump in membership to the students working on recruitment. “During our meetings, we would all come up with ideas about who we could ask to join. In the health careers class I teach, we would often talk about HOSA, and I encouraged students to join. I even mentioned it to students when they came in the nurse’s office.”
She says HOSA has been a program at MHS for about five years, and she been the adviser for three years. “I was surprised and honored to receive this award. HOSA is an incredible opportunity for students to have exposure to the healthcare industry. Watching the kids get excited about healthcare renews my passion for this field. I can’t say enough about how proud I am of all the students.”