Knox alumna Mrinalini Chakraborty '12, national field coordinator for the Women’s March, was recently intervi...
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2 East South Street
Galesburg, IL 61401-4999
St Louis, Missouri
Major in Spanish, Minors in Economics and Chemistry
Describe your experience.
I had an internship in Restauración, Dominican Republic, through the Summer International Health Fellowship program for an American non-profit called the Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children (FIMRC). I worked extensively in preventative health education concerning relevant topics like zika, cholera, and nutrition. We conducted face-to-face campaigns for health education in rural communities to help inform community members about the causes and treatments for diabetes and hypertension, zika, and cholera.
Each intern was required to complete an independent project. I created a workbook in Spanish for a health education class that is currently being used in the rural community of La Garrapata. I observed in the hospital a couple times a week while translating continuously from Spanish to English for other interns, and I helped take vitals twice a week for the diabetes and hypertension club run by FIMRC in Restauración and in several other rural communities.
How did Knox helped you prepare for this opportunity?
Knox shaped me into a person who checks their privilege and tries to look at problems systematically to find the root cause of them, which greatly helped prepare me for my internship in public health. I think Knox encourages and breeds cultural competency, which is a necessary skill to have when working in healthcare in cultures entirely different than one's own.
How do you see this experience having an impact on your future plans?
I plan to go into education or public health, and this experience has reaffirmed my love for both of those things while also helping me become a more culturally aware individual.
What are some main takeaways from your experience?
People from different cultures are more alike than they are different, and appreciating our similarities and building relationships is a great way to incite change.
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