Successfully balancing a challenging academic program with extracurricular activities, 81 students recently participated in St. George’s University Med/Vet Summer Leadership Academy, a summer program on the True Blue Campus in Grenada, West Indies for college and high school students interested in exploring a career in medicine or veterinary medicine.
Students from the United States, England, Canada, Puerto Rico, Trinidad, Tortola, and Grenada participated in activities that highlighted the culture and beauty of Grenada in addition to courses that combined didactic lectures, small-group problem solving sessions, practical lab work in state-of-the art facilities, and hands-on training through simulated and real-life situations.
Attending this year’s Med/Vet Summer Leadership Academy were Matt and Maria Coppola, a brother and sister duo interested in internal medicine and veterinary medicine respectively. As the children of Drs. Matthew and Carmela Coppola, who met at SGU and were both part of SGUSOM’s graduating class of 1984, the beautiful St. George’s True Blue campus overlooking the Caribbean Sea seemed all too familiar to them.
“We’ve spent our entire lives hearing stories about how our parents met each other for the first time here at SGU and what an amazing experience they both had while going to school here,” said Matt, a pre-med senior majoring in bio-chemistry. “This has been an incredible experience, not only did we learn about what it would be like to attend classes here but we also had a lot of fun exploring Grenada through snorkeling, hiking and island touring,” said Maria, a pre-vet sophomore studying biology.
Now in its thirteenth year, both the Med/Vet Summer Leadership Academy provides college students the added benefit of Medical Leadership concepts integrated into the curriculum with an introduction to international health care systems, global public health issues, and the concept of “One Health, One Medicine” as it affects healthcare delivery throughout the world.
The high school student program ran for ten days from June 24 to July 3 while the Medical Leadership component of the college student program ran for 12 days from June 8-19. Qualified students are eligible for college credit through the School of Arts and Sciences.
By Ray-Donna Peters