Haiti Trip Includes Outreach, Plans for Future

April 28, 2014

Kai Kennedy, director of clinical education for the Murphy Deming College of Health Science’s physical therapy program, is joining forces with colleagues at Mary Baldwin University to reach out to a community in Haiti.

Kennedy recently returned from Mary Baldwin’s inaugural alternative spring break to the rural southern region of the Caribbean nation, where she and a group of undergraduates conducted a mobile physical therapy clinic in three different towns. Students also assisted Kennedy and Doris Dodson, visiting assistant professor of social work,  in completing a research study critical for future Mary Baldwin trips to Haiti, which included interviewing residents and community leaders to gain insight into local development. Additionally, Bruce Dorries, associate professor of communication, and the undergrads worked with children of the host town, Cherident, to complete a community mural.

Kennedy plans to develop an elective study abroad course for Murphy Deming students, with the hope that they will impart the knowledge they have gained in the classroom in a setting they have not yet experienced. This high-impact elective would provide students with opportunities to advance skills in critical thinking, cultural competence, program development, and resource management.

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