Denver Public Schools working to train next generation of medical workers

DENVER -- There continues to be a shortage of health care professionals in the country.

Denver Public Schools is trying to train the next breed of medical workers.

A program that gives students the opportunity to get their associate degree or another certification by the time they graduate high school.

“It changes generations and families. We’re creating a pipeline for the future," said Elina Martinez, vice principal at Manual High School. “This program is leveling the playing field for inner city kids of color in Denver.”

Almost half of the students at Manual are part of the med school.

The program offers college level courses, accelerated curriculum, shadow sessions at the hospital and a pathway to a career in the medical field.

“They pay for everything, for like the jackets, for like all of our supplies and what we need, transportation, they pay for everything,” student Tenaja Franklin said.

“If you want to do delivery or social work you get a lot of experience like hands on actually.”

“I have the same equipment in here that you’d see in any college classroom,” teacher Rhonda Albers said.

Four schools within DPS have the program, which is about three years old.