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Roundup

Monday, November 14, 2005

Roundup’s Montana Study
   Roundup High School

Roundup sophomore Lindsey Appell reported on the seven community forums that students hosted from mid-September to the beginning of November. The forums were loosely based on the 1940s Montana Study in which community members met regularly over a period of a few months to discuss their town’s past, present, and future.

http://www.montanaheritageproject.org/index.php/teacherlore/roundup-montana-study-2/







Posted by Katherine Mitchell on 11/14 at 01:03 PM
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© 2005 Montana Heritage Project

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Roundup students host sixth community forum
   Roundup High School

Minutes of entire forum series

On October 24, 2005, Roundup students hosted their sixth community forum in the meeting room of the Musselshell Valley Historical Museum. The forums are loosely based on the 1940s Montana Study. This forum focused on medicine and the medical community. Panelists included Marge Jorgenson, a retired nurse who has worked in Roundup for fifty years and who now works part-time in home health; Karen Erdie, director of the Area Council on Aging; Teresa Wagner, an LPN and owner of a home healthcare business; Ken Kellum, owner of Medical Imaging Connections; Trish Christensen, a hospital board member; Ann Wiggs, an x-ray technician with both the hospital and with Medical Imaging Connections; and Sharon Tate, an RN who works at the hospital. Sophomore Abby Newell moderated the discussion.

Abby asked the panelists several questions that students had prepared in advance, ranging from why they chose to practice in Roundup to the healthcare situation and future of Roundup.

The panelists were unanimous in why they chose to practice where they did: they like Roundup. Even though, as Ken said, “It’s not the choicest of locations to practice,” and even though Sharon took a 50% pay cut to move to Roundup, the benefits are worth it. The panelists all said, in one form or another, that it’s worth the price they’ve paid to be able to raise their children in Roundup. The younger panelists like knowing where their children are and what they are doing. They also said that young people in Roundup seem to have a great work ethic. All of the panelists agreed that the schools are very good.

The panelists displayed a little less exuberance when discussing the future of healthcare in Roundup. Nationwide, rural medical practitioners and facilities are struggling to stay in business. It is cost prohibitive to offer many services in rural areas —services such as obstetrics or general surgery—so many patients have to travel to larger cities to get the healthcare they need. Once they begin seeing a doctor in a larger city, they tend to stick with that doctor. Ken and Trish both said that only about 35–40% of people in the Roundup area seek medical attention locally.

In addition, many small facilities can’t afford to pay their providers the market rate for wages, so providers go to where the money is; to larger, more urban areas.

When Abby asked about what the panelists saw for the future of Roundup, they mostly agreed that the area needs more businesses and industry so their young people will stay. Ken took that a step further when he said, “We need young peoples’ minds.” Our rural areas need the ingenuity, creativity, and energy of our younger citizens.

There were twenty-eight students at the forum, all of whom took several pages of notes. They paid close attention and several asked cogent follow-up questions—especially when the topic of Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements was brought up. A few students had other tasks: senior Matt Miller was the assigned videographer, junior Virginia Merfeld photographed the participants and guests, and sophomore Lindsey Appell took notes for the article she would write reporting on the forum.

All 100 or so students who are participating in the Heritage Project in Roundup will go over their notes from this and previous forums to come up with themes and possible solutions to the various issues their town faces. They will consolidate the information and report their findings back to the community at a final event scheduled for November 7 at the Community Library at 7:00 p.m.

Roundup school/community librarian Dale Alger opened the forum with a brief explanation of the Montana Study.


Panalists included Marge Jorgenson, a retired nurse; Karen Erdie, director of the Area Council on Aging; Teresa Wagner, an LPN and owner of a home healthcare business; Ken Kellum, owner of Medical Imaging Connections; Trish Christensen, a hospital board member; and Ann Wiggs, an x-ray technician with both the hospital and with Medical Imaging Connections.


Junior Virginia Merfeld photographed the forum while senior Matt Miller ran the video camera. Teacher Tim Schaff kept an eye on everything. 





Posted by Katherine Mitchell on 10/30 at 12:12 PM
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© 2005 Montana Heritage Project
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