Volunteering On the Front Lines of Global Health

Imagine providing healthcare services to thousands of underprivileged patients in remote communities across the globe. Many patients have had no prior medical care, and access to resources like water, electricity and medical supplies is scarce. In these environments, a little help goes a long way.

At Chamberlain College of Nursing, students have the opportunity to venture beyond their classroom to provide diverse populations with medical care and much-needed education on disease prevention and general health and wellness. Chamberlain’s Global Health Education Program experience, offered to students in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program, expands students’ educational horizons through a full spectrum of field, social and cause-related clinical experiences.

Led by Global Health Education Chair Dr. Susan Fletcher, EdD, MSN, BSN, students can go on two- to three-week service project immersion experiences at various international countries. Past experience locations included Brazil, Kenya, India, Bolivia, the Philippines, Uganda and the Dominican Republic. Student nurses learn how to be flexible and creative with the facilities and resources they have to accommodate patients of different cultural backgrounds – all while earning college credit through the Community Health Nursing course.

“Through Chamberlain’s Global Health Education Program experience, students have the opportunity to assess various diseases and conditions not typically found in U.S. hospitals, which also allows them to take on more responsibility in this unique setting,” stated Dr. Fletcher.

Chamberlain students also learn to provide compassionate, person-centered care to educate and enhance the well-being of diverse communities. Compassionate care is an integral part of Chamberlain’s approach to student success, called Chamberlain Care®, which prepares students with the strong foundation needed to be an extraordinary nurse. Chamberlain faculty like Dr. Fletcher model care, respect and professionalism, creating a culture that fosters collaboration, cooperation and respect by providing comprehensive academic resources, experiential learning activities and volunteer experiences, which sets the foundation to spur positive change in today’s healthcare environment.

“Nurses must prepare to work in diverse settings and provide care for patients of all ethnicities and walks of life,” Dr. Fletcher explained. “After participating in this experience, students come away receiving more than they ever could have given – a greater confidence in their abilities and making a real difference in the lives of others and are set on a path that will empower them to transform healthcare worldwide as extraordinary nurses.”

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