More than 100 students from various disciplines in the Waters College of Health Professions at Georgia Southern University helped bridge wellness and the community earlier this year by organizing community health fairs at various locations in Chatham County.
This is the second year that health professions students have organized these events for Chatham County residents. In addition to providing needed services and resources to the community, the health fairs provided students with an opportunity to collaborate with peers outside of their major.
“Studies have shown interprofessional collaboration significantly contributes to the quality of healthcare; however, teaching and practicing skills of effectively working together is logistically difficult,” said Janet Buelow, Ph.D, professor of health sciences. “Most students leave universities without the knowledge or practice of working with other healthcare professionals. This event significantly contributes to our health profession students’ education by providing the avenue to practice working with a variety of health professions students.”
Through their coursework, students majoring in nursing, gerontology, athletic training, sonography, sports medicine, and speech and language pathology were tasked with working together to create brochures and health activities that were used during the fairs.
“It takes commitment, time and effort to give our students a true interprofessional experience,” said Buelow. “The involved faculty truly believe in interprofessional collaboration and have put in the effort to practice it.”
Recent Master of Health Administration graduate Madhurima Pagdaloo (’20) was one of the site leaders at the health fair held at Morningside Assisted Living.
“My preparation for the health fair involved extensive market research to understand the needs of the senior residents,” Pagdaloo said. “My goal was to develop a good project plan and make sure tasks and deadlines were met.”
Pagdaloo, who managed a team of 21 health professions students to plan the health fairs, noted communication was key to the event’s success.
“It was a great experience to work with different individuals and have the opportunity to engage with the residents,” Pagdaloo said. “The project helped many people evolve to see their true potential in terms of leadership and management.”
In addition to Morningside Assisted Living, the health fairs were held at Beach High School, and assisted-living facilities, Buckingham South and John-Wesley Villas.
Each year, Georgia Southern University awards University Awards of Excellence to faculty and staff who have been identified as outstanding individuals making contributions to the success of Georgia Southern. This year, Hedly “Lee” Broxton has been named the recipient of the staff award for Research.
Broxton has served as the scholarship and research specialist for the School of Nursing since 2014. In his vital role, Broxton assists faculty with securing grants and other financial support used to support underserved citizens across Georgia.
“It is truly an honor to work with such talented faculty, staff and students, and I appreciate their support,” stated Broxton. “I am grateful to be able to serve the School of Nursing in my current role.”
Annually, the Georgia Society for Respiratory Care (GSRC) awards the Morton B. Duggan Distinguished Service Award to an individual who has demonstrated outstanding dedication to our society and the respiratory care profession. This year Department of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Sciences Chair and Professor Douglas E. Masini, EdD, RPFT, RRT-ACCS, AE-C, FCCP, FAARC, was honored with this award for his selfless dedication to the society and respiratory profession.
Masini was nominated by the 2019 President of the Georgia Society of Respiratory Care, Kiley Hodge, BS, RRT-ACCS, and the Georgia Society for Respiratory Care Board of Directors.
“I am very proud to be recognized by my colleagues and the leadership of the Georgia Society for Respiratory Care,” stated Masini. In addition to this award, Masini has been recognized as a national leader in his profession.
About the Morton B. Duggan Distinguished Service Award
Morton Duggan was a respiratory therapist and one of the founding fathers of the Georgia Society for Respiratory Care. He worked tirelessly on behalf of the program and education committee and was a recipient of the President’s Award in 1982.
The Georgia Medical Society presented its 19th Annual Health Care Heroes Awards in November. During the banquet, Waters College of Health Professions Dean, A. Barry Joyner, Ph.D., was named the recipient of the Health Care Hero Award in the Health Care Education Category.
The award recognizes individuals and organizations for their involvement in making health care better in the community by conducting or sponsoring educational activities that improve quality of life.
“While it is an honor to receive this award, it’s a true representation of the ongoing effort the Waters College of Health Professions is making in preparing students for their future roles in health care,” stated Joyner. Additionally, the award demonstrates the College’s value of not only serving the community, but continuing to provide opportunities for our students to work in collaboration with the community.”
About the Waters College of Health Professions
The Waters College of Health Professions is one of the nine colleges that comprise Georgia Southern University. The College was established to provide comprehensive and innovative programs that enhance the health and quality of life for individuals, families and communities within a global society. The College’s nationally accredited programs train outstanding leaders through engaged teaching and learning opportunities, scholarly and creative research and socially responsive service activities. With a commitment to interdisciplinary learning and professional excellence, the College prepares the next generation for success. For more information visit GeorgiaSouthern.edu/chp.