Dominican Republic Study Abroad Story: Madeline Keely

Honors student, Madeline Keely, utilized the Honors Funded Travel Scholarship to attend the Village Mountain Mission Project in the Dominican Republic. Below is a reflection of Madeline’s experience as well as some of her favorite photos from the trip. Thank you for sharing!

“I recently just got home from my mission trip to the Dominican Republic. Going into this experience I expected to just be giving donations and overseeing medical exams to underserved, rural communities, but it was so much more than that. The doctors we traveled with really wanted us to learn as much as we could, and many times integrated us into the health visits by having us do blood pressure, glucose checks and interviewing the patient. Through this I was able to learn about a variety of different diseases and the medicines used to treat them.

Not only did my knowledge in medicine increase, but also in Spanish. The primary language in the Dominican is Spanish, so as a Spanish minor I was really pushed to use the language. In fact, most of the time I was used to translate between the patient and the doctors! I was forced to learn new medical words in Spanish in order to properly communicate everything that the patient was telling the doctor.

All in all, this medical trip gave me so much knowledge both in Spanish and medicine, but it also gave me a humbling experience. Seeing all of the people living in such poverty has really opened my eyes, and made me extremely grateful for everything I am so blessed to have. It is a trip I will hold with me forever.”