JAOA/AACOM Medical Education  |   March 2019
Just Say Know to Drugs! A High School Pharmacology Enrichment Program for a Rural Population
Author Notes
  • From the West Virginia University in Morgantown (Dr Hamrick); West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM) in Lewisburg (Dr Carrier and Student Doctors Fox and Dhir); and Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia (Dr Harter). 
  • Financial Disclosures: None reported. 
  • Support: This study was supported by the WVSOM Rural Health Initiative, the West Virginia Governor's STEM Initiative, and in-kind institutional support. 
  •  *Address correspondence to Raeann L. Carrier, PhD, WVSOM, 400 Lee St N, Lewisburg, WV 24901-1128. Email: rcarrier@osteo.wvsom.edu
     
Article Information
Medical Education
JAOA/AACOM Medical Education   |   March 2019
Just Say Know to Drugs! A High School Pharmacology Enrichment Program for a Rural Population
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, March 2019, Vol. 119, 199-207. doi:https://doi.org/10.7556/jaoa.2019.031
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, March 2019, Vol. 119, 199-207. doi:https://doi.org/10.7556/jaoa.2019.031
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1
Abstract

Context: Just Say Know to Drugs! is a summer pharmacology enrichment program for high school students. First-year osteopathic medical students serve as teachers, introducing students to pharmacology while acquiring teaching skills.

Objective: To assess the effects of a pharmacology program on high school students and to understand the effects of teaching this program on first-year osteopathic medical students.

Methods: The influence of a pharmacology STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) enrichment program on high school students’ career interests and student teacher preparedness was determined by a pre- and posttest, as well as a postprogram survey.

Results: Data from all 37 participating high school students and 10 of 16 student teachers (medical students and undergraduate assistants) were evaluated in the study. Survey findings suggested that this STEM program increased student awareness and knowledge of pharmacology, osteopathic medicine, and scientific research. Furthermore, student teachers thought that they developed the necessary skills to communicate and educate populations with diverse science backgrounds and comprehension levels. The immersion of high school students in the scientific content significantly increased student awareness of pharmacology (paired t test, P<.0001).

Conclusion: The Just Say Know to Drugs! program delivered benefits for both high school students and student teachers.

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