Education and Care that Transcends Borders

Nursing Student Global Mission Trips

Published September 1, 2019


Two nursing students joined an interdisciplinary team that traveled to Ghana in 2019 to provide medical care for the local communities. The team set up a clinic and administered care for hundreds of people, many of whom walked five miles to visit. Kwasi Adusei, DNP ’19, says, “There is always work to be done, but even if you can make a person’s life better, just for one day, it could be the moment of hope that transforms their lives, but never as much as that moment of hope can transform your own.”


Charnelle Lewis, DNP ’19, traveled to Kenya in January 2019 through Kenya Relief, a faith-based organization that provides medical care to the Migori community. The mission team screened over 200 patients and did nearly 75 endocrine and general surgeries in just three days. Lewis says, “Going to Kenya reinforced that being a nurse and becoming a nurse anesthetist is truly for me.”


Six intended nursing major students and one ABS student were a part of an interdisciplinary team that spent 13 days traveling to different sites around Jamaica, observing and interacting with the general population, medical staff and patients at community clinics. During the January 2019 trip, the students studied the differences between obesity prevalence in Jamaica and United States cultures.


The Consortium for Humanitarian Service and Education Hope program provides disaster and emergency response exercises for health disciplines from colleges and universities across the country throughout the year. The exercises are offered in New York, Florida and Missouri, which give our nursing students specialized training and experience. The New York Hope exercises take place at the State Training Preparedness Center in Oriskany, New York.


Molli Oldenburg, DNP, RN, FNP-C, UB SON Global Initiatives Coordinator and clinical assistant professor, traveled to Dakar, Senegal, in July 2018 with 20 UB students and faculty, including two nursing students. This interdisciplinary global mission was led by the School of Dental Medicine to perform dental care procedures for underserved populations. In total, they served 414 patients and performed 1,585 procedures, averaging 3.8 procedures per patient. Another interdisciplinary UB group returned in July 2019.


Four students and two faculty from UB SON participated in the Remote Area Medical program in Knoxville, Tennessee, with faculty and students from the School of Dental Medicine. This is a mobile clinic service that provides general medical, dental, vision and preventive care and education to underserved populations in impoverished areas. The nursing student volunteers triaged patients, obtained health histories, and assisted in the dental clinic and in other clinic areas.


Students from the Multicultural Nursing Student Association (MNSA) traveled to Peru in January 2019 to provide health care, including dental and wound care. The students treated over 1,000 patients, sometimes in a medical truck and other times in abandoned buildings. Dante Hatem, BS ’19, MNSA president, says, “I hope new nursing students will continue the tradition of a student-led trip around the world to enhance their cultural sensitivity and learn more about global aid.”

Million Hearts

UB SON nursing students contribute to the Million HeartsĀ© initiative with Millennium Collaborative Care, providing free health screenings for the underserved populations of Buffalo and WNY. Our students volunteer multiple times per year with the organization and gain valuable experience working alongside other health related professions.