HOSA chases success at State Leadership Conference

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This article was written by 2023 staffers Anya Pinto and Lauren Wong.

Outrunning the worst of the rain Wednesday, April 12, the HOSA team traveled  to Orlando to attend the State Leadership Conference for Future Healthcare Professionals (HOSA).

Over 160 students from Heritage attended, competing in a variety of categories ranging from written tests and  medical procedures to team events and performance categories. Each competitor vied for a spot in the top three in order to win the chance to compete at the International Leadership Conference (ILC) in June.

Aside from competing, studying and practicing, students engaged in a variety of recreational activities. Upon their arrival April 12, the team went to Disney Springs where they enjoyed dinner. The rest of the trip was less structured; many students opted to swim in the pool and visit the water park in the hotel which had a lazy river and multiple water slides.

The team attended the Opening General Session at 9 p.m. April 13, the Recognition Session April 14 and the Grand Awards Session April 15. Students who earned the Barbara James award were recognized for their outstanding contributions to the medical field by way of community service and the Broward (Sunrise) region raised the most money for the Be the Match foundation. At the Grand Awards Session, students who placed in their various competitive events were recognized and informed if they made it to the International Leadership Conference.

Fitting the conference’s theme, Heritage pushed Beyond All Limits to win the following awards: 

Cultural Diversities & Disparities:

1st Place: Isabel Duffy, 9

Dental Terminology:

2nd Place: Srihith Nooka, 12

Health Informatics: 

1st Place: Sahir Hai, 10

Medical Reading:

4th Place: Yana Danzig, 11


2nd Place: Erin Zhou, 12

Clinical Lab Science:

1st Place: Calvin Mathew, 10

2nd Place: Shrika Kantipudi, 11

4th Place: Amara Okpala, 11

Dental Science:

3rd Place: Rachel Kludy, 11

Home Health Aide: 

4th Place: Luce-Gabrielle Etienne, 9

Nursing Assisting:

3rd Place: Anagha Iyer, 9

Pharmacy Science:

2nd Place: Ike Okpala, 12

3rd Place: Gabriel Restrepo, 10

Sports Medicine:

2nd Place: Benjamin Callaghan, 12

Veterinary Science

4th Place: Daniel Lopez, 12

CERT Skills:

1st Place: Patricia Duffy (9) & Naomi Tamura (10)

Emergency Medical Technician:

2nd Place: Nesibe Kalb-Karakaya (10) & Alex Sumenkova (11)

5th Place: Kobe Tako (11) & Trace Binder (12)

Public Health:

5th Place: Mia Rosen (9), Laila Rozenberg (9), Audrey Duenas (9)

Health Career Photography:

5th Place: Casey Cross, 11

Healthy Lifestyle:

2nd Place: Emir Sahin, 11

Prepared Speaking:

1st Place: Esther Oyetunji, 11

Researched Persuasive Writing & Speaking:

4th Place: Anya Pinto, 11

Research Poster:

4th Place: Melodi Fugate, 11

Biomedical Debate: 

5th Place: Aurora Lai (12), Sofia Toledo (12), Sophia Abati (12)

Forensic Science:

3rd Place: Jason Cheng (11) & Amy Liu (12)

HOSA Bowl: 

1st Place: Iris Fan (10), Joshua Turner (11), Carla Del Rio (11), Lauren Wong (11)

4th Place: Surina Gadh (10), Carly Aikens (12), Cate Zeiger (12), Asher Lee (12)

Medical Innovation:

3rd Place: Ananya Zaverchand (9) & Aarna Baranwal (9)

Senior Alana Lodin was awarded with recognition and free merchandise for co-designing the pins and t-shirts worn at the state conference. (Photo/Dr. Diana Sood)

Sophomores (left to right) Jeeya Patel, Gabriela Passaro, Jaimee Canalejo, Arissa Khan and Surina Gadh enjoyed their lunch after a long day of competition. (Photo/Dr Diana Sood)

Senior Benjamin Callaghan celebrated his third place win on stage by striking the famous “Usain Bolt” pose. (Photo/Dr. Diana Sood)

Seniors (left to right) Sophia Abati, Aurora Lai and Sofia Toledo won fifth place in biomedical debate. (Photo/Dr. Diana Sood)

Sophomore Surina Gadh walked up on stage to represent the Sunrise region for raising the most money for Penny Wars. (Photo/Dr. Diana Sood)