I benefited from this study abroad experience because it exposed me to the unfortunate reality that exists in poverty stricken areas. In this way, the environment provided me with all the more motivation to implement a targeted intervention to foster lasting positive change for the young girls in Sapallanga. This experience strengthened my public health science skills, particularly with regard to program planning abilities.
We talked to the family about intestinal parasites and our research project, and they agreed to participate. This was a typical day in Sapallanga, spent walking door-to-door recruiting participants for my project.
During my study abroad experience, I participated in medical and dental campaigns as well as worked alongside some physicians in a private clinic in Lima, Peru.
As with all study abroad experiences, the experience is never complete without the social and cultural interaction component. The academic portion of study abroad experiences is highly beneficial, however the ability to interact and immerse oneself in another culture for an extended period of time is very advantageous and highly contributes to character building and a greater awareness of the world in which we live.
As a student leader on this program, I had the privilege of working closely with our host Peruvian surgeon, Dr. Margarita Marchino. On the last day of our program, she shared about her life and why she hosts these service trips.
It's incredible how my experiences here have the capability to shift my entire perception of the world in the space of one moment. I'm beginning to grasp the significance of the isolation caused both by poverty and the geographical isolation of these mountains.
The sort of one-on-one experiences I had with the surgeons and anesthesiologists were more than I am likely to experience in my clinical rotations here.