In brief: New health careers center emerges

Come spring, UW-Eau Claire students pursuing a career in health will be able to make use of the William J. and Marian A. Klish Health Careers Center  — named in honor of an Eau Claire couple who donated $100,000 to the UW-Eau Claire Foundation to enliven the process of creating the center.

Associate Professor of Biology Julie Anderson is the director of the William A. and Marian J. Health Careers Center.

“Dr. Klish is an MD alum of UW-Eau Claire, and he wanted to help raise the visibility of our pre-health programs,” Anderson said. “So he came to our department and asked what we needed to do that; he also reached out to students, asking them what they need.”

Having an established place to study and official to talk with was the answer, Anderson said.

With this simple idea in mind, he also said the center is starting to come together, and services will become available to students in the spring — after Schofield 30, the space the center will occupy, is fully renovated.

“In the short-term, (the center) is a place where students can gather,” Anderson said. “There will be resources available that pertain to all of the professional medical schools.”

Anderson said this means students pursuing a variety of disciplines, such as pre-med or pre-dental will benefit from the center.

The long-term goals of the center involve reaching out to the community,  he said.

“We really want to work with the community to get our students more access to opportunities like job shadowing, medical observation and volunteer/service.”

There are many chances for students to get involved with health in the community, but Eau Claire needs to improve their ability to partner with medical facilities in the area, Anderson said.

Cynthia Koenigsberg, a junior biochemistry and molecular biology double major, said she hopes to go to medical school to become a pediatric oncologist.

Being in the thick of studying for the MCAT and starting to apply to medical schools, Koenigsberg said she hopes the center will help her through this process.

“(The center) will be really useful for when I need to check out materials to study for the MCAT, or if I need to talk to Dr. Anderson or any of the advisers at the center about any questions that I might have.”