panelquoteblack1On July 18-19 SEAHEC partnered with the University of Arizona MEZCOPH  to organize a two-day Service Learning Immersion for 11 interprofessional students.

On arrival at SEAHEC, students participated in an Interprofessional panel discussion. Panelists included Alfredo Guevara, MD, Sergio Enciso, Pharmacist at Mariposa Community Health Center (MCHC), Susan Kunz, MPH Chief of Health & Wellness Dept. at MCHC and Alicia Sanders, Community Health Worker (MCHC). Students were able to ask a series of questions regarding personal history, professional background, and the rewards and challenges of working in a rural and border area. After the panel, SEAHEC Executive Director,  Gail Emrick provided students with an “Overview of Border Health & Immigration: Political & Economic Considerations.”

To provide context for the panel and overview, the students participated in a fact finding border treasure hunt. Using a scenario of being a single parent working a minimum wage job and, diagnosed with diabetes, the students explored the resources and challenges available to maintain  a healthy lifestyle and proper health care on both sides of the border.  

Dinner was at En Comun’s Cenaduria in Nogales Sonora where they learned about microcredit efforts. Saturday morning they traveled to El Comedor in Nogales,  Sonora to hear about programs and activities the Kino Border Institute (KBI)  is involved with and how to volunteer. SEAHEC has partnered with KBI on providing health resources for displaced migrant workers.

On the last day, students participated in the first anniversary celebration of ARSOBO (Arizona/ Sonora-Border), and agency that trains and employs individuals with disabilities to construct medical equipment, and their partnering with Hanger, Inc.   in providing prosthetic limbs and all-terrain wheelchairs for people in Nogales Sonora. Students helped ARSOBO staff with new clients, and conducted face to face interviews with clients for suggestions on how to improve the services and to find out what impact ARSOBO has had in their lives. Both days ended with students sharing their reflections after the days’ activities.