Bringing the heat! Maimonides Medical Center launches new student internship program

Students gather at Maimonides Medical Center
Students gather at Maimonides Medical Center in Sunset Park for the first day of their medical internship with the HE3AT program.
Photo by Jada Camille

Maimonides Medical Center celebrated the launch of HE3AT, a career-focused teaching program giving high schools students on the ground learning opportunities, on Sept. 18.

HE3AT — which stands for Healthcare Energy Education, Environment, Agriculture, Technology — connects 25 students from six local schools with applied learning courses in a field they want to explore. 

Ken Gibbs, CEO and president of Maimonides, said the internships prepare the next generation of career professionals to become the best they can be.

“The students are going to have a better feel for what the transition from school to work is really all about,” he said. ” It will awaken some excitement about the opportunity to work in health care.”

students begin internship at maimonides
Each month, students enrolled in the program will visit the hospital to learn from healthcare professionals and tour the facility. Photo by Jada Camille

Gibbs and students were joined by Michael Prayor, superintendent of school district 20; Douglas Jablon, Executive Vice President of Community Relations at Maimonides; Assembly member Simcha Eichenstein, and program instructors.

Students taking part in HE3AT will head to Maimonides once a month to tour the hospital and learn practical principles of design thinking, applied entrepreneurship, and ethical business management from healthcare professionals.

“By having the chance to learn something about working in health care and creating paths forwards, they have the opportunity to learn about some of the most meaningful work that happens in our society,” Gibbs told Brooklyn Paper.

During the program, students will have to draft a relevant, industry-specific proposal, prototype design, or a business plan along with an oral defense on their research process, method, and findings, and will present their projects and defenses to a panel. By the end of the semester, students will earn two course credits.

According to Michael Luppino, a He3at program facilitator and teacher at John Dewey High School, HE3AT is unique because it teaches high schoolers professionalism and financial literacy through the paid internship.

“I really believe in this program. It’s a great experience for students to really get work exposure,” Luppino said. 

Nicole Li, a junior at New Utrecht High School and HE3AT participant, said she is most excited to see what working in the medical field is like. 

“I want to get a feel of what it’s like,” Li told Brooklyn Paper. “Our school is pretty lucky to have this program and I’m pretty lucky to have the opportunity to do this.”