Teen seeks funds for medical forum
Brieanna Cross, ranked number one in her junior class of 486 at Douglas High School, has been chosen by science teacher Richard Booth to attend the 1997 National Youth Leadership Forum on Medicine.
This honor should be a dream come true for the 17-year-old who said she has always wished for a career in medicine, but she doesn’t have the $2,000 required to attend conference.
Cross, a dedicated student who has worked since the age of 12, is asking the community for donations so that she might attend the conference which is scheduled for July 7-16.
In not only concentrating on the medical profession, Cross just returned yesterday afternoon from a four-day Northern Nevada Leadership Conference in Yerington. Cross has been elected secretary for next year’s student body. She also participates in sports, playing soccer. She was a member of the 1996 All-State Academic soccer team, and runs track.
“The National Youth Leadership Forum on Medicine will expose me to many medical fields with seminars on 20 different medical career options,” said Cross.
Cross said, if she is able to attend the conference, she will participate in such activities as wearing scrubs and attending surgeries, and discussing issues such as cloning, AIDS and possible cures for cancer with respected medical professionals and peers.
Cross said after DHS graduation, she plans to attend a major university in California, either the University of California at Berkeley or the University of California at Santa Cruz, where she will major in pre-med. Cross hopes to attend one of the most widely respected medical schools in the world, the University of California at San Francisco.
Although still open to many branches of medicine, Cross said her preliminary areas of interest are orthopedic surgery, pediatrics or sports medicine. She said she really isn’t sure what branch of medicine she wants to pursue.
“That’s one of the reasons why I want to go to the conference,” said Cross.
She said another reason to go to the conference is to find out if she has the constitution to participate in activities which may tend to make others squeamish, although she doesn’t think it will bother her.
“That’s another good reason to go. If I faint during surgery then I know it’s probably not a good idea,” she said.
She said she’s been looking into acquiring donations from various organizations, but there aren’t many organizations who have money available for juniors in high school.
She said she’s sent out about 25 to 30 letters already and is hoping for small donations from individual community members.
“Even small amounts of money help out so much,” said Cross.
Cross said she’s already had one garage sale and plans on putting on another and doing, “whatever else works.
Cross said businesses and individuals wishing to help out with this cause can make checks payable to either her or the National Youth Leadership Forum.
Donations may be sent her her at 16 Pioneer Trail, Markleeville, Calif. 96120.
Why does Cross want to be a doctor?
“I know I could do it. I think it would be rewarding and a lot of fun. It would be so much fun to help people,” she said.