Community Action Day Draws Hundreds to Make a Positive Impact Together
During the July 23 event, 209 AUC students and colleagues collaborated with community partners to drive forward more than a dozen service projects in health, education, environmental awareness, and more. “AUC students continue to make an IMPACT, while taking every opportunity to learn about humanity and health,” said Dr. Natalie Humphrey, assistant dean for community engagement. “They are attentive, innovative, engaged and eager to learn. I am so proud of them!”
Health and educational activities have been a mainstay of Community Action Day since it was first established, and last Saturday’s event was no exception. A new health assessment offered this semester was a dental screening, led by students in the Pediatric Interest Group and Dr. Neha Dayalani-Vaswani, visiting faculty, clinical medicine and behavioral science. Participating students and volunteers engaged local dentists in screening dental health for children from the New Start Foundation for Children foster home in Sint Maarten. Students also helped provide dental health education while observing the dental visits.
A group of 7- to 9-year-olds had the chance to spark their interest in medicine during an educational event hosted by the Black Medical Student Association, Surgery Interest Group and Careers in Advancing Medicine (CIAM). During the activity, AUC students used Play-Doh to simulate heart surgery and spark students’ interest in science and medicine.
Community Action Day also provided an opportunity to address environmental health. AUC’s Dive Club led by Dr. Ryan Downey, assistant professor of physiology, collected 485 pounds of trash from Simpson Bay in partnership with divers and supporters from the Nature Foundation Sint Maarten, The Scuba Shop, the Coastal Cleanup Project, SXM Divers, Dive Adventures, Mermaids of SXM, the Coast Guard and Marine Park Patrol.
These are just a few examples of the ways in which our community came together to make a difference. Thank you to all of our students and colleagues for your dedication toward serving the communities in which we live, study, and work!