UNE medical school students donate $2,000 to local hospice center

UNE COM check donation
UNE medical students Justine Pepling and Rebecka Wilson present a $2,000 check to Daryl Cady, CEO of Hospice of Southern Maine, and Laura Seeger, Gosnell Memorial Hospice House manager.

Students at the University of New England’s College of Osteopathic Medicine (COM) have donated $2,000 to the Gosnell Memorial Hospice House in Scarborough, building upon a successful partnership between the two organizations that has lasted nearly 10 years.

The money was raised during a fundraising dinner held by the UNE COM American Geriatrics Society/Gerontological Society of America Student Chapter for Geriatrics and Palliative Care last November. The event, a “murder-mystery” dinner, featured several students and faculty performing a script written by chapter members. Over 160 people attended the dinner.

“Since December 2014, UNE COM students have been immersed at Gosnell without any expectation of payment,” said Marilyn R. Gugliucci, Ph.D., professor and director of Geriatrics Education and Research at UNE COM. “This donation is a small ‘thank you’ to the amazing staff at Gosnell for training and guiding our students.”

Over 290 COM students have participated in UNE’s 48-Hour Hospice Immersion Project, a program Gugliucci launched ten years ago to provide students with firsthand experiences of living and working in a hospice care environment. The students are provided with a room and meals for 48 hours and given opportunities to administer hands-on patient care, family support, and post-mortem care.

In 2019, Hospice of Southern Maine, which owns the Gosnell House, presented Gugliucci with the Katherine Pope Leadership Award for her innovative program that helps advance the work of hospice care.

UNE COM is one of the few schools in the country that requires students to undergo significant training in aging and end-of-life issues.