Six graduate students present on cultural immersion experience in Washington County

May 23, 2014

L-R: Joe Wolfberg, Cali Johnson, Lisa Savard, Peter Isikwe, Adrienne McAuley, Dan Johnson, and Chris Ortiz

On April 14, 2014, a group of six graduate students in the College of Pharmacy and the Westbrook College of Health Professions presented on their experience in Washington County as part of an interprofessional cultural immersion course.

Charity Benson (College of Pharmacy), Kathryn Dempsey (Physician Assistant Department), Peter Isikwe (College of Pharmacy), Daniel Johnson (Department of Physical Therapy), Christopher Ortiz (Physician Assistant Department), and Lisa Savard (School of Social Work) gave a talk at Ludcke Auditorium in which they discussed the highlights of their experiences over the course of the semester and, specifically, in Washington County, where they stayed the week of March 16-22.

The trip to Washington County included two visits to Pleasant Point Passamaquoddy Reservation, including the elementary school and health center.  Visits within Eastport included several meetings with community-minded business owners & advocates as well as two schools and the health center.

The cultural immersion course was directed by Karen Houseknecht, Ph.D., professor in the College of Pharmacy, and other teaching faculty included:  Mary Creighton, a Passamaquoddy Community Elder; Holly DeYoung, CEO of Eastport Health Care; Vera Frances, a Passamaquoddy Community Advocate; Cali Johnson, MSEd, LCPC, UNE’s coordinator of Counseling Services; Adrienne McAuley, PT, DPT, assistant clinical professor in the Department of Physical Therapy; Joe Wolfberg, M.S., site coordinator of the Physician Assistant Program; and Anne Zill, director of UNE’s Art Gallery.

The goal of the cultural immersion experience was to provide a group of future health care professionals with better understanding of the healthcare needs among the diverse people in the state of Maine, a better understanding of their own connections to these communities, and a better understanding of how being present and listening are the foundation to any good healthcare services. 

Watch the presentations