College of
Human
Medicine

College of Human Medicine entering class participates in Afternoon of Community Service

August 25, 2011

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THE GRAND RAPIDS PRESS

"Getting to know your new community; giving back to your new community" were the themes for the College of Human Medicine's Afternoon of Community Service, Wednesday, for its entering class of 2011.

The 200 new medical students divided into teams and visited 24 organizations in Lansing and Grand Rapids to help with such tasks as sorting food donations, assisting residents with exercise programs, outdoor maintenance, packing and sorting materials, assisting with children’s activities, sanitizing toys and stocking pantries.

In Lansing, students visited Ronald McDonald House, Mid-Michigan Food Bank, Allen Neighborhood Center, Greater Lansing Food Bank, Hospice of Lansing, National Association of Mental Illness of Lansing, St. Vincent Catholic Charities, the Capital Area Salvation Army, NorthWest Initiatives, Haven House, Eve’s Place and Ele’s Place.  In Grand Rapids, students visited Mel Trotter Ministries, Catherine’s Health Care, Porter Hills Village, Heartland Health Care, American Cancer Society, Clark Retirement, Michigan Blood, Baxter Community Center, Spectrum Health Continuing Care and The Salvation Army.

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THE GRAND RAPIDS PRESS | Published: Thursday, August 25, 2011, 10:00 AM

Michigan State medical students begin education with community service projects in Grand Rapids

By Sue Thoms | The Grand Rapids Press

First-year medical students in Grand Rapid began their education Wednesday by stocking food pantries, sanitizing toys, leading recreational activities and doing other community projects Wednesday.

The activities are a fitting way to kick off their studies because community involvement is at the heart of medical education, said Dr. Marsha Rappley, dean of the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine.

"It's a critical element to the effective delivery of state-of-the-art medical care -- to be engaged with one's community," she said. "We can not deliver the best medical care to the people of our community unless we are working with them and dialoguing with the citizens of our community about their needs and how we can help meet their needs."

The 100 first-year students in Grand Rapids divided into teams and volunteered at 10 human service organizations. The goal is to make community service "a part of how they think, a part of how they practice," Rappley said.

The students will continue to serve the community throughout their medical school education because health is related to other elements of culture -- such as education and the food distribution system, Rappley said. Some will earn a certificate in meeting the needs of the underserved.

Agencies served by the students include: Mel Trotter Ministries, Catherine’s Health Care, Porter Hills Village, Heartland Health Care, American Cancer Society, Clark Retirement, Michigan Blood, Baxter Community Center, Spectrum Health Continuing Care and The Salvation Army.

This is the second year incoming medical students will attend classes at the college's Secchia Center in downtown Grand Rapids, which opened in September 2010.

E-mail Sue Thoms: sthoms@grpress.com

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Cory Morese | The Grand Rapids Press

Cory Morese | The Grand Rapids Press
Michigan State University medical student Marko Martinovski
jokes with Reha Glazier at Clark Retirement Community,
1551 Franklin Street SE, in Grand Rapids on Wednesday.
Glazier is among the MSU students volunteering
throughout the Grand Rapids area. Glazier's husband
had been a boxer and she was play boxing with
Martinovski. "I like giving back to the community, but
I didn't think I'd get beat up though," he said jokingly.
"It's great to see how happy they are."