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Global Health & Local Love

Thursday, February 14, 2019   (1 Comments)
Posted by: Matthew Nicholas
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Global Health & Local Love

Global Health Love

By: Samantha Feller, SPT, Northwestern University

Before PT school, we shared an interest in global health and traveling. I was exposed to Global Health during my involvement in undergrad with Water to Thrive, majoring in Spanish with a focus in health professional classes, studying abroad in Costa Rica and studying in Spain. In Spain, I completed an internship at a PT clinic, learning the differences in PT practice.

Logan was involved with organizations as well in college including Habitat for Humanity, local shelters and shadowing PTs serving in rural community outreach programs. When we learned Northwestern had a Global Health interest and opportunities to travel abroad with the program, it was an added perk to attending.

During our first year, our class had a lecture on global health abroad to discuss what it means, the positive effect it can have on a community and the negative effect not done properly. This sparked our interest in learning about volunteering/practicing abroad, and a small group of us extended the discussion with a faculty member who has numerous experiences. Since then, we have become involved in knowing what we can do not only abroad, but remembering what we can do locally as well.

In December, we will have the opportunity to complete a service trip together in Belize as a physical therapy experience. Until then, we have each volunteered at organizations for our Professional Advancement and Community Engagement project (PACE). Logan volunteered in the adaptive sports program through Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, and I volunteer at Deborah’s Place offering housing to women in Chicago. We also considered organizing another abroad trip with students to observe in a local hospital and learn from their Physical Therapists on how rehab is incorporated in patient care.
Within our curriculum, all students are required to volunteer with an organization through PACE, but we have continued to strategize how to help expand our student involvement throughout different areas of Chicago and increase student awareness on available opportunities. Global health involvement is a focus throughout Northwestern and often there are talks available to attend to discuss different aspects of medicine and global health.

While attending CSM in Washington, DC, we were able to incorporate this interest and learn more ways to become involved. For example, there was a platform discussing Pro Bono Clinics in three different areas, and the effect schools have seen on the community and the students’ learning experience. This talk, and CSM in general, is a great opportunity to talk to others about how they are involved abroad and/or locally as students and as professionals. During our time at CSM we also had the chance to talk to multiple travel PT agencies to learn more about working in various areas around the country and connect with other organizations that work abroad. After school, we hope to continue to volunteer with organizations or outreach programs and continue to travel to learn from others and help when needed.

 

Share your thoughts! Comment below!


02/14/2019

Comments...

Christina M. Frank PT MBA says...
Posted Saturday, February 23, 2019
I can feel the passion you have for PT, travel and service!

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