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June 23, 2010

Teen Health Leadership Project

Teen Health Leadership ProjectThe Teen Health Leadership Project was first implemented at St. John's High School during the 2008-2009 school year. Funded by the National Libraries of Medicine and the Center for Public Service Communications, the Project is a collaboration between the high school and the College of Nursing at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC).

The program works with community partners- including Communities In Schools, Johns Island Regional Library, the Area Health Education Consortium, and various MUSC departments- to provide health literacy and leadership development training. This instruction enables students to design and implement outreach projects that improve the awareness and use of quality health information on a local level.

The program's activities include research and health literacy workshops, outreach projects, leadership skill development, and health career exploration.

The Teen Health Leadership Project has three main goals:

  1. Teen Health Leadership ProjectTo increase health literacy among students and community residents.
  2. To develop leadership skills in students and facilitate their engagement in the community.
  3. To promote health careers among minority students.

In February of 2009, two program participants traveled to Washington, DC to present at the 3rd National Summit on the Elimination of Disparities in Health, presented by the Office of Minority Health. In addition to the conference presentation, the team was also able to meet with Congressman Clyburn on Capitol Hill. In April of 2010, six students traveled with program coordinators Melissa Cox and Candace Moorer to Washington, DC to present on the Teen Health Leadership Project to senior staff at the National Library of Medicine, a division of the National Institutes of Health.

The program coordinators are currently working with staff at Haut Gap Middle School to incorporate aspects of the program into the middle school curriculum.

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