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Career Exposure and Exploration Programs in Western Mass

Inventory of Career Exposure and Exploration Programs in Western Mass

Baystate Health will be hosting a Healthcare Career Pathways Event on Thursday, February 22, 4:30 – 6:30 pm at the Baystate Health Education Center (361 Whitney Ave, Holyoke, MA). This event is ideal for local students (high school and college) exploring healthcare careers and current Baystate Health employees wanting to advance their careers. Presenters include nursing, patient care technicians, workforce development, mental health counselors, respiratory therapy, medical interpreting, community health workers, social work, and many more. Pre-registration is required by Friday, February 16.

Baystate Springfield Educational Partnership (BSEP) is a high school healthcare career pathway program for high school-age students.  While it is open to students in the Hampden County area, the program prioritizes residents of Springfield, Mass. It includes exploration of many different health careers, a teen mini-medical school, and summer workshops to give students interested in healthcare careers more information about professions and direct access to people currently employed in the field.   Since its beginning in 2007, BSEP has served 1,800 students in the program across three course cycles: fall, winter/spring, and summer. Many of the students moved onto post-secondary education and/or employment in the field. The program has provided more than 300 work experiences or internships to residents of Springfield and, currently, over 280 students work Baystate Health.  If students wish to join the program, we require attendance at a BSEP orientation.   One can register for an orientation at

The Western New England University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences offers opportunities for high school students to learn about careers in pharmacy, pharmaceutical sciences and occupational therapy through hands-on learning experiences. This day camp is open to high school students who demonstrate strong academic skills and an interest in pharmacy or the pharmaceutical sciences and/or occupational therapy.  Program is free to participants.


  • Learn about different career paths in pharmacy and/or occupational therapy;
  • Get tips on how to prepare for a career in pharmacy and/or occupational therapy;
  • Hands on activities and demonstrations;
  • Camp is free for all participants
  • Work with current students and Faculty

High School Juniors and Seniors (Five-Day Camp): June 26–June 30, 2023, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

High School Freshman and Sophomores (Two-Day Camp):  June 29–June 30, 2023, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

Participants can apply online at See program flyer for contact information.

Explore Holyoke Community College’s healthcare programs including radiologic technology; veterinary and animal science; nursing; Foundations of Health; direct care workers and community health workers; medical assistants; and certified nursing assistant (CNA) at our upcoming HEALTH CAREERS OPEN HOUSE on Wednesday, March 8 from 4 to 7 p.m.!

  • Western New England University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences offers High School Career Exploratory Workshops for Pharmacy and Occupational Therapy throughout the academic year.  Workshops are given at high schools in academic classes (preferable STEM) and after school health clubs to share with students an interactive presentation about Pharmacy and/or Occupational Therapy, explaining top career paths within each profession, academic requirements and starting salary information.  The workshops are free and are offered at a time most convenient to high school class schedules.
  • Session One: March 22, 2022 from 6:00 – 7:00pm, EST. What is Occupational Therapy and Various Careers in OT. Explore what Occupational Therapy is, and learn about the various careers in OT. Link to register:
  • Session Two: March 24, 2022 from 4:00 – 5:00pm, EST. Careers in Pharmacy. Explore careers in Pharmacy specific to Retail/Community Pharmacy, Hospital Pharmacy, and Clinical Pharmacy. Link to register:
  • Session Three: April 19, 2022 from 4:00 – 5:00pm, EST. Herbal Medications and How Plants Become Pills. Explore herbal medications and how plants become pills. Link to register:
  • Springfield Technical Community College offers a Health Careers Exploration Night on Tuesday, November 30, 2021 at 7pm -9pm for anyone interested in becoming a health care professional to learn more about STCC’s programs. The night features tours of STCC’s SIMS Medical Center, a nationally recognized patient simulation facility, and tours of departments. Visitors can meet faculty and current students and observe demonstrations and hands-on activities. The event is ideal for anyone thinking about changing careers or becoming a medical professional to find out if the health care field is a good fit.
  • Baystate Noble Hospital is accepting applications for their Student Ambassador summer session! At this time, the program will be offered to students 16 years of age that are entering their junior year. The program is a two-week student ambassador program that provides high school students with an in-depth look into a range of departments and the opportunity to observe healthcare professionals, both clinical and non-clinical.Some departments involved are as follows: 2North, Bronson Rehab, Laboratory Services, Surgical Services, Cardiology, Infection Prevention, Emergency Services, Food Services, Safety & Security, Diagnostic Imaging.
  • A hands-on, open house showcasing to students the variety within healthcare roles will be held Wednesday, March 4 from 4-6 p.m. in Conference Room A. To register for this FREE event and for more information: email Laurie Gilbert, Volunteer Coordinator  Volunteer Services will be accepting student essays with an explanation of why they would like to attend our program along with their application at the event with a deadline for submission of April 3. Interviews will be scheduled in the weeks following the application process and final decisions for the positions will be announced April 17.
  • Bay Path’s Overnight Program invite high school seniors and transfer students to experience Bay Path by spending the night. Students will attend classes, meet professors and other students, sleep in one of the residence halls, and eat in Bay Path’s dining commons.
  • Spring Overnight 2020: Stay overnight from Monday, February 17th – Tuesday, February 18th!
  • There are many of other options for high school students to visit and experience campus life at Bay Path University, learn more here.
  • The Healthcare Workforce Partnership of Western Massachusetts partners with post-secondary academic institutions and healthcare service providers to deliver a HEALTHCARE CAREERS Awareness Day program for middle schools students.  The partnering organizations arrange tours of emergency rooms, ICUs, and simulation labs, and provide a career emersion experience to 8th grade students from Chicopee, Holyoke, Springfield and Westfield middle schools.The organizations’ partnership in this very important program, allows students from Chicopee, Springfield and Westfield to observe and learn from healthcare practitioners in the practice setting.  It gives them first-hand, real life exposure to healthcare professions, as well as informed and equipped them for future education and career planning decisions. This collaboration is one step closer to preparing students with the information and experiences to promote STEM infused education and careers in healthcare.
  • The Baystate Franklin Medical Center Student Ambassador Program provide high-school students with an opportunity to experience the variety of healthcare professions available to them before deciding on a college or major field of study as well as the diverse careers offered within the hospital setting. Applications are currently available in the guidance offices at most high schools in Franklin County and at Baystate Franklin Medical Center’s Volunteer Services office. Applicants should be prepared to provide contact information for three references, including an academic source, an extracurricular activity leader, and a personal reference.
  • The Baystate Medical Center Student (Springfield) Ambassador Program is a summer-long commitment. Students are required to volunteer a full day (always the same assigned day) once a week and attend evening hands-on, educational in-services.  In order to qualify for a certificate of completion for this program, students must volunteer at least 5 weeks (days) during the summer and must attend a minimum of two of the evening sessions.
  • The Holyoke Community College (HCC) and Chicopee Comprehensive High School (CCHS) Career Pathways Initiative is a dual enrollment health education option for CCHS students.  Students who are enrolled in the Health Science Academy earn college credit through articulation agreements or college classes offered by the College on-line or in person at the high school. The career pathway model links and integrates high school and postsecondary curricula with industry-recognized skills, knowledge and certification. The Initiative is informed by work being conducted within the Pathways to Prosperity Network, an initiative of Jobs for the Future and the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
  • Greenfield Community College’s STEM Starter Academy is part of a statewide initiative to promote STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields. Our program is for students new to STEM (including high school students) who are interested in attending GCC—for free! Participants take a summer science, technology, engineering or math class, receive intensive advising, tutoring and career support, and participate in special STEM-focused activities.
  • The Westfield Promise is an early college program offered through Westfield State in partnership with Westfield Public Schools, Holyoke Public Schools, and Springfield Public Schools.  The program enables high schools students to earn up to 12 college credits by the time they graduate high school, greatly increasing the likelihood that they’ll go on to earn a college degree.
  • Transition to College & Careers (TCC) is a free non-credit program offered both days and evenings that helps adult students 18+ prepare for college and identify a career path. The program includes intensive academic preparation in English reading and writing, math, study strategies, and computers in a college context. We offer college navigation, career advising, and tutoring in an environment conducive to learning.
  • School-to-CareerDropout Prevention and Recovery Initiative:Combining work and learning is a powerful and effective dropout prevention strategy providing many students a reason to stay in school. Students who participate in school-to-career programs attend school more regularly and graduate at a higher rate than their peers. Students also gain valuable work experience, career awareness and connections outside their communities. Under the direction of the MHHCWB, local School-to-Career Partnerships connect high school students with area employers offering work-based learning experiences.

MassHire Hampden County Workforce Board

1441 Main Street, First Floor
Springfield, MA 01103

The MassHire Hampden County Workforce Board is an Equal Opportunity Employer/Program, auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities, Verizon Telephone Relay Service: TDD/TTY: 1-800-439-2370 Voice: 1-800-439-0183