Program: UW Global Health Community Health & Asset-Based Community Development in Sri Lanka, Winter Intersession
Student’s Majors: Microbiology
Academic Life: While in Sri Lanka we did predominantly cultural immersion and lectures from those working in the government, health care sector, public health sector, and for NGOs/nonprofits. Our lectures were varied; some were more question-and-answer based, others were more traditional, like a UW lecture. Outside of the classroom, we had visits to multiple clinics, both in allopathic and indigenous medicine.
Most Memorable Moments: The most memorable part of my field course was the visit to the midwife. In the US, we paint a very different picture of midwives and what they do, but in Sri Lanka they are the ultimate health care provider that everyone loves. Midwives in Sri Lanka are essentially a part of the family while the mother is planning to be pregnant, throughout the pregnancy, and even postpartum. The work the midwives do there is above and beyond what I would expect from any provider. The midwives truly embody what it means to be a holistic medical care provider.
Tips for Future Students: Make sure you’re flexible and be ready for a wonderful adventure!
New Perspectives: During my fieldwork experience I realized how much I value holistic views on life and medicine. Once I saw how the doctors and midwives sought to understand patients from every angle and get to know them personally, I discovered my desire to be a doctor like that.
“We had visits to multiple clinics, both in allopathic and indigenous medicine.” “The most memorable part of my field course was the visit to the midwife.”