Ever wanted to go abroad and make a lasting difference with others through medicine and health? Well, now you can! GLA offers several ways to improve the pathway to nursing through their summer nursing programs for high school students, which is the perfect first step if you’re thinking of entering the medical world later on in your college/career path.
On the Dominican Republic: Global Health Initiative™ you are able to work with at-risk families, young children, and community leaders. While there, you’ll learn practical skills critical to success in the medical field as a nurse, while expanding your knowledge base through working in areas of health, sustainability, and education. This kind of experience really shapes up for a future in nursing for those who can handle the grit and grind of the job.
If the Dominican Republic isn’t calling your name, then check out the Ghana: Building Healthy Villages™ program. It offers similar initiatives like focusing on improving health conditions, but with a twist of even more limited resources in rural west Africa. Nearly four-fifths of Africa’s population lives on less than one dollar a day, so it is a challenge to improve healthcare while maintaining minimal costs. Here, you’ll work on the ground to understand how public initiatives that tackle a problem before it festers can help reduce the burden on the healthcare system, lowering the number of patients who are eventually seen by nurses and doctors.
In both places you will get to see first-hand how a clinic operates, and how different developing countries handle their approach to medical care. Unlike nursing programs for high school students in the United States and Europe, it becomes clear early on that nurses are rarer and even more critical to short and long-term care in countries with fewer resources. You will also understand what being a future nurse can look like if you choose to work outside developed economies.
Where else can you go overseas and learn life lessons that are directly connected to becoming a future nurse? Not only are you able to shadow people in the field, but you are able to work with them and get to know them on a personal level. Ask them questions! Get into the nitty gritty! See the daily hardships and obstacles, but also understand the rewards. Think of the joy you’ll bring as you help people enter a medical system that isn’t always as accessible as it seems they should be.
For more info on nursing summer programs for high school students, and other programs in the Medicine & Public Health field, click here.
Contributed by Samantha Watkins