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Home » Uncategorized » Red Mountain Dream Makers are New Mexico’s future health professionals

Red Mountain Dream Makers are New Mexico’s future health professionals


Friday, April 12, 2019; Deming, NM: Sophia Scott has her future all sewn up thanks to her participation in the Dream Makers Club. The Red Mountain Middle School 8th Grader has decided to become a surgeon after a year-long whirlwind adventure through the career opportunities available in the field of health care offered by the after-school club.

Red Mountain Dream Makers visit with EMS on their possible career futures.

Scott and 14 other Red Mountain Middle School students graduated the Dream Makers Club last Friday (April 5, 2019) evening. Along their way to graduating, the teens got acquainted with therapy horses, visited research laboratories at the University of New Mexico (UNM), dissected a sheep’s heart, learned to surgically suture wounds, and climbed inside an ambulance for lessons in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

The Club has chapters in Deming’s Red Mountain Middle School, Silver City’s La Plata Middle School and Aldo Leopold Charter Middle School. Educator Irene Carbajal sponsors the club at Red Mountain Middle School.

Angel Jara said the club had helped him decide to pursue a career in forensic pathology. The 8th Grader was especially impressed by Dream Makers trip to UNM where they toured a learning lab that offered life-like medial simulator dummies that coughed and bled fake blood to better train medial students.

Mia Solis, also an 8th Grader, plans to become an obstetrician after exploring her career opportunities with he Dream Makers Club.  With her were fellow 8th Graders, Desiree Richmond and Jakelin Ramirez, both of whom also hope pursue careers in health care. Richmond as an EMT and Ramirez as a nurse.

8th Grader Marisol Valerio completed her second year with Dream Makers Club and said every year the club had professionals sharing “more and different careers.” Valerio enjoyed the club because it offers the opportunity to “be around people of all ages and discovering what we like.” She’s decided to become a specialized doctor of hematology.

Valerio’s parents, Arturo and Marisa, were happy to have their child participate in the club. “We’re happy she knows what she wants to do in life. This club is something good for our kids. Mrs. Carbajal is very nice to give her time to offer students this opportunity.”

“Each and every one is an amazing student,” said Carbajal of the Dream Makers graduates. Carbajal told the students, “You are going to move onto different opportunities having seen what is possible through this incredible program.”

Usually, three students are selected for their outstanding participation in the club, but this year Carbajal and program specialist Anna Daggett made it clear all the Dream Makers were so engaged in the club that they had to reassess their criteria and made it based on attendance. 

Angelo Granado, Mia Solis and Miranda Vasquez received certificates for their outstanding attendance for the Dream Makers’ Program.

Program Specialist for UNM’s Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Stacy Collier addressed the students and praised them for their commitment to the club, “Thank you for furthering your education and interest in health care. We hope that you will come back to serve your community.”

“Our hope with this program is that the students learn about all the various opportunities there are in the health care field, and that that they realize that any career is within their reach.  Ultimately, our goal is that they will become health professionals and will return and serve in their communities,” said Baudelia “Bala” Salgado, Director of the FORWARD New Mexico Area Health Education Center (FNM-AHEC).

Red Mountain Middle School Principal Jesus Saenz said, “What I see with this group, and the graduates every year, is they are headed in the right direction. I see them transform over their time with the club and take what they have learned to reach a new level of maturity and personal growth. Hopefully, they will come back to Deming as adults and continue to contribute to our community.”

The Dream Makers Clubs are sponsored through a partnership with the UNM Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and FORWARD New Mexico Area Health Education Center (AHEC), a program of the Center for Health Innovation (CHI) which serves the southwest region of New Mexico.

Red Mountain Middle School Dream Makers graduates included: Brooke Cruse, Aubrianna Flores, Angelo Granado, Gavin Grattan, Angel Jara, Xochitl Jimenez, Aron Krockgether, Ian Ortiz, Desiree Richmond, Kristdeanna Rodgers, Jakelin Ramirez, Sophia Scott, Mia Solis, Marisol Valerio, and Miranda Vasquez.

The natural path for these Dream Makers is to attend the upcoming Teen Academy for Health Sciences (TAHS) offered by FORWARD NM. Offered in June, the free three week-long academy focuses on science studies and is held at Western New Mexico University in Silver City. The academy is open to incoming high school freshmen to incoming seniors in southwest New Mexico. The Academy is accepting applications until Monday, April 29, 2019. 

For more information on the Dream Makers Clubs or the Teen Academy for Health Sciences contact Salgado at (575) 597-0030 or email: