Pfuture Ready #IamCTE
Angelina Alvarado-Class of 2023
  • Hendrickson HS Healthcare Therapeutics student says "my peers and professor were very impressed..."

    Angelina Alvarado started at Hendrickson High School generally unsure what pathway she wanted to follow, so in her sophomore year she took Medical Terminology to see if she liked the health sciences program. By her junior year she was really excited to take the Anatomy and Physiology science class, which ultimately confirmed her career choice in health science. Her Healthcare Therapeutic program classes, especially Medical Microbiology with Ms. Sandra Mello-Lopez, built a foundation that helps her feel confident in her freshman college science labs.


    “As I complete my second semester of my freshman year in college, I have found that taking medical microbiology has overlapped with my current biology class, especially during lab. Currently we have been assigned to DNA barcode (assign an identification to a specimen through DNA extraction) local samples of plants and fungi. In medical microbiology, we covered gel electrophoresis which is used to determine the size of DNA fragments which is also an essential step in DNA barcoding. Having the background knowledge from medical microbiology, I felt confident in my lab knowing what the overall goal and purpose of gel electrophoresis was, how it works, and reading the gel imaging. I think it was really cool and felt empowering having that knowledge beforehand from your class. My peers and professor were very impressed that Hendrickson had that class available.”


    Angelina is a Kinesiology major and plans to minor in occupational therapy. She aspires to be an occupational therapist specializing in helping disabled and special needs youth through hydrotherapy. She says -

    “I’ve been a swimmer almost my whole life, including my four years at Hendrickson, and since graduating high school, I found it difficult to erase from my life as it had become an environment where I felt both confident and peaceful. I fell in love with the idea of being able to use my passion for swimming as a therapy tool after being inspired by another occupational therapist with a similar swimming experience to mine. Coupling my swimming background and kinesiology knowledge will allow me to extend a sense of water confidence to children of all abilities so they can share the same sense of ease I do in the water while simultaneously providing therapy care. That, I can confidently say, is my goal for my career.”

    Her tips for current students?

    • Stay open-minded, get involved to find out what you enjoy, dislike and build a good relationship with your teachers - they are part of a great support system.

    • Consider dual credit courses, personally this was a better option for her than AP because “you don’t have to pay to earn credit by passing the AP exam… and not all colleges accept AP credits” (or not in the area you may want the credit). But, be aware that dual credit courses are fast paced because they are semester instead of year-long.


    Kudos to Ms. Sandra Mello-Lopez who inspired Angelina, and countless other students, to pursue health science related careers through relevant, engaging instruction and strong, supportive relationship-building.