by Jim Pinder and Steve Vodhanel
While there are over 100 schools of pharmacy in the United States, Loma Linda University School of Pharmacy is the only one that financially supports students to participate in global pharmacy outreach. Loma Linda University exemplifies a commitment to global medical service by incorporating international service opportunities into the academic curriculum in order to 1) prepare health professions students for a career of effective global service, and 2) to promote the health of the medically underserved people throughout the globe.
“We are committed to being the exemplar school of pharmacy for global outreach. By putting our students in the furthest reaches of the world to interact with the medically underserved we open the door to active learning opportunities that complement opportunities here in the United States,” states School of Pharmacy Dean Billy Hughes.
The experiences for pharmacy students participating in international outreaches has truly been global. Pharmacy faculty and students have traveled to provide healthcare to under-served people as close as Mexicali, Mexico, to the remote locals of the Amazon River, the Ethiopian desert, Kenya, Malawi, Afghanistan and China, just to name a few.
To date, the School of Pharmacy has worked in five continents. Recalling his mission to Africa, third-year student Steven Bowen stated, “…the experience of leaving everything and everyone behind and only depending on myself and what I was taught gave me confidence in myself and I returned inspired for challenge, for giving, and for life.”
During Chapel on May 12, the School of Pharmacy celebrated the many contributions that students have made to global pharmacy outreach. Rashid Mosavin, PhD, MBA, who coordinates the International Pharmacy Outreach Program (IPOP), interviewed students who recently participated in mission outreach in Kenya, Ethiopia, Malawi, and Brazil. “I chose to study pharmacy at Loma Linda University because of its reputation as a paragon of global service to humanity,” stated Midhasso Foge, third year pharmacy student.
Dr. Rashid Mosavin interviewing, from left, Sarah Prates (Brazil, Amazon region); Jordan Lee (Brazil, Amazon region) Midhasso Foge (Ethiopia); Danielle Davis (Malawi, Africa); Steven Bowen (Africa).