Arkadelphia News

Applications accepted for ‘Project H.E.A.R.T.’ summer program in Arkadelphia

JONESBORO — New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine at Arkansas State University (NYITCOM at A-State) is now accepting applications for Project H.E.A.R.T., the college’s “mini-medical school” program for high school students which will be held in June in both Jonesboro and Arkadelphia.

Thanks to a generous gift from an anonymous donor, NYITCOM at A-State is offering sessions on both the Arkansas State University and Henderson State University campuses this summer.

“We are thrilled to be able to expand this popular program and make it easier for students from across the state to attend,” said Shane Speights, D.O., dean of NYITCOM at A-State. “For several years, we’ve been looking for opportunities to expand Project H.E.A.R.T., and our relationship with Henderson State through the Arkansas State University System makes this the perfect fit.” 

The Jonesboro session will be held June 12-15 on the A-State campus, while the Arkadelphia session will be held June 7-9 at HSU.  

NYITCOM at A-State Student Doctor Kristin Smith (left) instructs students as they dissect a bovine heart as part of NYITCOM at A-State’s “Project H.E.A.R.T.” summer camp.

Project H.E.A.R.T. (Health Education, Advocacy, Reflection, and Training) is a residential camp aimed at enlightening students about future careers in health care as well as higher education and community health. There is no cost to the student to attend.

“Project H.E.A.R.T. is a great program for students who are interested in health care careers to learn about opportunities in the field while spending time on a college campus and engaging with current medical students who are eager to mentor them,” said Jennifer Wharton, NYITCOM’s associate director of pipeline programs and Project H.E.A.R.T. director. “It is truly one of the highlights of our year.”

Students applying for Project H.E.A.R.T. must be a high school student entering 11th or 12th grade in August of 2023. The program is aimed at students who would benefit from an opportunity to excel.

NYITCOM medical students serve as counselors for the event. Participants learn about a day in the life of a medical student, hear about the undergraduate admissions process, and engage in educational activities that include an opportunity to dissect a porcine heart in the anatomy lab.

Applications are available online and must be submitted no later than April 30.  Interested participants must submit a personal statement with their application. For more information, email Jennifer Wharton at