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Global Health Scholars Embark on Learning Exchanges

SON Global Health Participants

32 students from the School of Nursing will act as global scholars this summer in 15 countries, including Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Kenya, Malawi, New Guinea, Portugal, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, and, for the first time, the United States.

Several students will join ongoing projects like Carolina for Kibera, UNC Project-Malawi, and the Atlantis Project. Others will continue exchange relationships in Nicaragua, Uganda, and elsewhere. A few students will return to their countries of origin to apply new healthcare perspectives.

The SON’s first exchange with the SON at Peking Union Medical College in Beijing is underway. Five students are visiting PUMC this summer, four of whom will present an educational paper at the 2012 Beijing International Nursing Conference in June.

Melinda Kellner Brock Public Health Nursing Scholar Audrey Boyles will be the first student to study domestically as a Global Health Scholar, working with the volunteer initiative Santa Barbara Street Medicine in California. The nonprofit serves Santa Barbara’s homeless by setting up clinics in parks in the evenings, and deploying teams of doctors on street rounds. Boyles will assist in SBSM’s clinics while conducting research on the smoking habits of homeless populations.

In addition to the 32 students traveling abroad this summer, two groups of Global Health Scholars embarked on service learning trips over spring break. One group, led by Clinical Assistant Professor Chris Harlan, traveled to Guatemala. The second group went to Honduras under the leadership of Clinical Assistant Professor Jean Davison.

The Honduras group was a mixed contingent of 22 students and volunteers from the UNC School of Nursing and UNC School of Pharmacy.  The group teamed up with Compassion Med International in providing medical screenings and care to local populations. UNC’s MedWorld provided the group with medical supplies to distribute to local hospitals and clinics.