CMA Celebrates 10th Anniversary: Part 2-of-5 Series
This is the second in a five-part series this week celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Carroll Medical Academy.
SPECIAL EDITION: Q&A with Carroll Medical Academy Directory Sherry Martin
Carroll Medical Academy Director Sherry Martin has led the program since 2005. Before becoming a teacher, Martin worked in various medical roles. Martin has designed the CMA program to challenge students and prepare them for college. She has grown the program through parent involvement, sponsors and internships. Martin shared her thoughts on the program during a Q&A session.
What do you want for your CMA students?
“I want them to find their medical calling. I want those who are interested in medicine to learn now, at the high school level, if this really is the career for them. I have some students who are very successful in the program but learn early on they can’t stand the sight of blood. It’s better to learn now and give students and their parents a head start on college. The goal of CMA is to give students options.
What options are available in CMA for exploring medicine?
“Veterinarian school is very popular right now among recent graduates. I’ve had several former students go into nursing school and genetics. We actually have one graduate studying at Emory, where the Ebola scare took center stage this past semester.”
You were a Carroll ISD teacher before the Carroll Medical Academy started. What is the academic climate like for students before CMA to now?
“With CMA I have a group of kids that are very diverse. Some students want a career in science, others in math. I also noticed students from different backgrounds were finding common ground in the classroom. They started breaking stereotypes.”
When should a parent start considering the Carroll Medical Academy as an option for their student?
“After their student takes the math placement exam in middle school. That’s when students begin utilizing a graphic calculator. Those are the two big things: math testing and a student’s fluency in Algebra.”
When should a student apply to CMA?
“Students in eighth grade apply in January. An acceptance committee is convened to blind score applications. A student’s class schedule is important – whether or not they are taking advanced level classes. Teacher recommendations are also a key part of the application process. We have approximately 50 students enroll every year.”
What are some of the Carroll Medical Academy’s strongest supporters?
“We have been fortunate to have many great supporters and sponsors over the last 10 years, but Spine Team Texas has been with our program since the beginning. They were at the very first CMA Career Day (formerly known as the Physician’s Breakfast). We’ve also had great support from local medical facilities like Forest Park, Children’s and Baylor. Dr. Larry Elliott at Baylor has always taken great care of us.”
For those students who have been accepted to CMA, how do you prepare them for the courses that lie ahead?
“I try to make it as much of a college course as I can. Students have to be mature in my class.”
How different are they from other classes taught in Carroll ISD?
“Well for example, sophomores take CMA anatomy. This is different than other anatomy classes. The students in CMA are more advanced. You have to be able to think and apply in here.”
What do you want for your CMA students when they graduate from Carroll ISD?
“I want my students to know how to study and take notes, so when they leave here they can be an even greater student. What I want most of all is for these kids to be great students.”
WEDNESDAY: Carroll Medical Academy Now from the Student’s Perspective