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San Joaquin Valley College Blog

Vent Race Kicks off Rancho Cordova Open House

August 7, 2018

Students and faculty participating in the 2018 Vent Race at SJVC Rancho CordovaFor the seventh year in a row, Rancho Cordova’s Respiratory Therapy program students organized their annual Vent Race to raise funds for Folsom Cordova Community Partnership and for the sheer entertainment of over 200 attendees. It is also the perfect occasion for the campus to host an Open House.

“Students, their families and friends, and other visitors toured the campus and met staff and faculty before cheering on our students who participated in the Vent Race held in our parking lot,” says Julia Foss, Respiratory Therapy instructor.

It was the first time for many attendees to see the inside of classrooms and labs where their family members spend so many hours and days each week. Respiratory Therapy students demonstrated a Code Blue response in a simulated lab, other students practiced patient assessment skills, while another group of students performed resuscitation on a neonatal infant mannequin.

“Each cohort of students related to their audience whatever subject they were learning this term,” says Julia. “Each cohort also did fundraising that day, selling nachos, hot dogs, ice cream or raffle tickets for a movie night of tickets and dinner, or T-shirts.”

Fundraising netted $302 that was presented to their grateful recipient. Folsom Cordova Community Partnership works to build strong families in the community, meet the needs of struggling parents to increase self-sufficiency, promote youth development through positive peer and adult relationships, and develop employment skills for individuals to achieve their career goals.

The highlight of the day was the Vent Race, where six teams of six runners each lined up with the conviction that they would be the first team to roll a bulky ventilator barely contained in a wobbly cart across the finish line. One lap around their parking lot track was just about the same distance as a 5K.

The Super Techs team for SJVC Rancho Cordova 2018 Vent RaceVentilators are machines that support breathing by getting oxygen into the lungs. It is a piece of medical equipment with which Respiratory Therapy students are very familiar. This year, SJVC Rancho Cordova’s new Surgical Technology program assembled a team to make their mark on the Respiratory Therapy program’s territory.

“Each team had a theme and had to dress and decorate their ventilator to match their theme,” says Julia. Among the themes were Dr. Seuss, Hawaiian Luau and Aerobics. “They had to put the ventilator in something with wheels, like a cart or stroller, then go out there and race it.” Anything with three or four wheels was accepted. No motors allowed.

A flag dropped, someone yelled ‘Go!’ and they rattled, squeaked and pushed toward victory….or at least successful completion.

Cheers from the crowd did nothing to quicken their pace, as they pushed their FrankenRacers beyond their original design. All teams stayed the course, and no accidents, collisions or injuries were reported.

Team Jazzercise, the senior cohort in the Respiratory Therapy program, took First Place, dominating the event. Jazzed team members included Daniil Abakhin, Yowty Chao, Maksym Melnychuk, Amarpal Nijjar, Austin Maryatt and Rebecca Almanza. The team was led by faculty member “Richard Simmons,” aka Matt Angelo.

Team Super Techs from the Surgical Technology program locked up a win for the Best Team Spirit and Decoration. Team members included Daniel Currier, Robert Gonzales, Lacey Duarte, David Chipak, Vladislav Okunev and Forest Harris.

“This event really brings the students together,” says Julia. “They are so stressed and busy so much of the time in their fields of study; they work very hard. This entire week, they get to relax a little more and work with their classmates. Everyone always looks forward to this.”

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