SGU Announces Partnership with Kwantlen Polytechnic University

St. George’s University announced a new direct admission partnership with Kwantlen Polytechnic University in British Columbia, Canada.  

Each student admitted to the new 4+4 program will receive a $10,000 scholarship to begin studies in medicine or veterinary medicine at SGU following completion of their undergraduate degree at KPU. 

“We’re proud to team up with Kwantlen Polytechnic University to provide a direct pathway for students to pursue careers in medicine,” said Dr. G. Richard Olds, president of St. George’s University. “With US and Canadian medical school admissions more competitive than ever, this partnership can relieve students of the stress of the standard application process.”

Students can gain provisional acceptance any time during their first three years at KPU. They learn if they’re accepted to the KPU/SGU program in the fall of their fourth year. All applicants must complete a degree in health sciences. To qualify, medical school applicants must maintain a 3.4 grade point average and record a competitive score on the MCAT. Veterinary applicants must maintain a 3.2 grade point average and post a score of at least 300 on the GRE.  

Upon graduation, successful applicants may enroll immediately at SGU. Medical students have the opportunity to spend one year at Northumbria University in the United Kingdom. 

Admitted students are eligible for merit and need-based financial aid, in addition to the $10,000 grant from St. George’s. Graduates of St. George’s can pursue residencies throughout the United States and Canada.

“Canada is facing acute shortages of both doctors and veterinarians,” said Sandra Banner, SGU’s director of admission for Canada. “Partnerships like this one can boost the number of skilled professionals working in these fields—and help people make their dream of becoming a physician or veterinarian a reality.” 

“We are very excited about this new partnership with St. George’s University in Grenada. It has been years in the making,” said Carole St. Laurent, associate vice president, KPU International. “This partnership will not only provide the opportunity for our health science students to achieve their goals to become doctors, it will also make KPU an attractive destination for local and international students to more readily access a graduate level education in medicine by beginning their educational journey at KPU.” 

“This partnership is welcome news to our students who will now have the opportunity to pursue their dreams to become doctors,” said Dr. Elizabeth Worobec, dean of the Faculty of Science and Horticulture at KPU. “The seats for medical schools in the lower mainland are highly competitive, so for many of our students, a chance like this to study abroad to fulfill their goals is a welcome opportunity.” 

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High-Achieving SVM Students and Faculty Honored at Spring Virtual Awards Ceremony

Screen shot courtesy of SVM student Briana Kinsey.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The School of Veterinary Medicine recognized students and faculty who exhibited academic excellence, outstanding work ethic, and a strong commitment to the field during last month’s SVM Spring 2021 awards ceremony.

“Students who were named during the awards ceremony are the best of the best when it comes to exemplifying the qualities needed to become exceptional veterinarians,” said Dr. Neil Olson, dean of the SVM. “With the added challenge of learning during a global pandemic, the honorees have especially excelled, and we are so proud of their accomplishments at SGU.”

Dr. Olson, Mr. Brendon LaGrenade, SGU’s vice provost for institutional advancement, and Dr. Anne Marie Corrigan, associate dean of academics, addressed the online crowd. In addition to a wide range of traditional awards acknowledging the best students in all classes, student organizations could nominate students and faculty/staff for an award.

Two new awards were presented this semester:

  • Dean Olson’s Award for Academic Excellence, given to Term 3 students with the highest GPA (as of the end of Term 2) and who embodies professionalism. The award has a combined value of $2,000 EC, split among the nominees.
  • SGA SGU Awards of Excellence is a new award given by the Student Government Association recognizing SGU faculty and staff members who play an integral part in vet students’ success.

During the virtual event, the SVM also held its Phi Zeta Honor Society inductions as well as the traditional Term 6 student slideshow sendoff, a compilation of photos taken to highlight students’ time at SGU before they head into their clinical year. It was the first time that all three events were held together.

Dr. Rhonda Pinckney will retire on June 30 after 17 years at SGU.

The awards event also acknowledged retiring faculty member Dr. Rhonda Pinckney, a professor of veterinary parasitology within the Department of Pathobiology, and one of the longest serving SVM faculty members. Dr. Pinckney has been with SGU since 2004 and will retire on June 30.

The SVM hopes to be able to resume the award ceremony in person for the fall term.

Zoetis Awards

Zoetis Veterinary Student Scholars Award: April Perez, Sonali Desai, Pricilla Leinberger

Zoetis Revolution Awards
Small Animal Surgery Award: Kristie Armas

Small Animal Internal Medicine: Montana Loveday

Equine Medicine Award: Amanda Broeder

Production Animal Medicine Award: Haley Embleton

Scholarship of Service Award: Elizabeth McGarvey

Student Research Award: Glenna Raycroft Maur

Zoetis Distinguished Veterinary Teacher Award: Dr. Nicki Wise

Outstanding Colleague Awards

Term 1: Stephanie Nickerson

Term 2: Maureen Kruhlak

Term 3: Leandra Margolies

Term 4: Sheridan Nichols

Term 5: Adriana Kalaska

Term 6: Krystal Mendoza

Dean Olson’s Award for Academic Excellence Recipients for Spring 2021

Letty Bonilla, Daria Ehrenberg, Melissa Ferguson, Lauren Fleming, Acacia Johnson, Jennifer Memleb, Teylor Nealy, Cristians Rivas Morales, Aleeka Roberts, Samuel Ruch, Valerie Savino

Adrienne Lotton Memorial Award

Nakia Sweetman

SVM Alumni Scholarship Award

Cody Cragnolin

Giant Paws Giant Hearts Foundation “Hercules” Award

Cody Cragnolin

PAWS Recognition for Term 6 Facilitators

Krystal Mendoza, Collin Leisz, Camille Ogden, Anna Ritz, Elizabeth McGarvey, Amanda Broeder

Veterinary Public Health CommitteeOne Health One Medicine” Community Leader Award

Caitlin Nay

Student Organization Awards                   

SGUSVM Large Animal Society Most Valuable Sixth Term LAS Member Award

Maggie Pratt Isgren

Student Chapter of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists Most Valuable Pathologist Award

Taryn Paquet

Wellness Committee MVP Award

Chandler Case

TherioHERO Award (faculty award)
Dr. Firdous Khan

Student Chapter of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine Awards

Student Winner: Vittoria Lipari
Faculty Winner: Dr. Anne Corrigan

Student Chapter of the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society

Student Winner:  Tasha Faletti
Faculty Award: Dr.  Anne Corrigan

Student Government Association Awards

SGUSVM Outstanding Faculty Award Recipients

Term 1-3: Dr. Rhonda Pinckney
Term 4-6: Dr. Firdous Khan

**NEW** SGA SGU Awards of Excellence (faculty award)

Terms 1-3: Ms. Tandy James
Terms 4-6: Ms. Naudia Dundas

George B. Daniel Award

Maria Coppola

The Pinckney Parasitology Award

Brianna Shepke, Lance Shen Kenny

Alpha Delta Chapter of the Society of Phi Zeta

Spring 2021 Inductees

Term 5 Inductees

Alexa Albam, Richard Brown, Devin Curtsinger. Briana Howard, Adriana Kalaska, Nadine Pearsall, Elizabeth Russell. Dawson Ruschkowski Tess Talmage, Kiersten Yndestad

Term 6 Inductees

Taylor Adams, Marisa Curro, Erica Foster, Annelise Godau, Krystal Mendoza, Hannah Narburgh, Camille Ogdon, Alexa Pensabene, Sarah Quinlan, Anna Ritz, Jaren Rodier, Sofija Todorovic, Katherine Williams

Term 6 Students Inducted Last Term

Jacqueline Compta, Cody Cragnolin, Molinaro Goode, Kyra Gore, William Holl, Cullen Kurgan, Abigail Kenly, Vittoria Lipari, Taryn Mooney, Romina Morgan, Kelly Ramos, Jaimie Remillard, Yu Wang

Phi Zeta Specialty Faculty Recognition for Their Work in Promoting Research and Scholarship

Dr. Firdous Khan, Dr. Heidi Janicke

 

Screen shot courtesy of SVM student Briana Kinsey.

 

– Laurie Chartorynsky

Equity in medicine the focus of new SGU scholarship

St. George’s University’s new scholarship program—the Equity in Medicine scholarship—focuses on developing strong physician pipelines in underserved areas by recruiting students from these areas and encouraging them to return home to practice.

According to Health Resources and Services Administration, medically underserved areas are areas designated as having too few primary care providers and other factors.

Read about two Equity in Medicine Scholarship recipients who are committed to working in areas where care is needed most.

Anders Grant

Hometown: Bronx, NY

Her commitment: Primary care on Native American reservation

Anders Grant spent more than 20 years as a dietitian on the East Coast and in Texas. Years later, after raising her own children, she began working with various tribes on the Native American Reservation—where medical school called out to her.

In her three and a half years there, she “fell in love with the communities and the people.” Aided by the Equity in Medicine scholarship at St. George’s University, Ms. Grant is committed to returning to the reservation—a medically underserved area—when she becomes a physician.

“The people were so interested in teaching me their ways, and because I love languages, I immediately tried to learn the Navajo language. It was very reciprocal,” she said. “Once I showed that I wanted to learn their culture, that I wasn’t someone who said a casual hello, we became more like a family.”

Healthcare access and education is limited in and around the various Reservations. According to Ms. Grant, it takes upward of an hour to drive to visit with a healthcare professional, and even then, staff and resources are limited.

Ms. Grant is especially focused on the treatment and prevention of diabetes, working closely with children and families on the reservation to address the root of the problem—obesity. As an ultra-marathon runner, she offered diet and exercise programs for children that yielded tremendous results and was soon adopted by many parents.

“What I really emphasized was moving,” she said. “They saw me running out there every day, which showed that I practice what I preach. If I can get the children to start improving their health now, oh my goodness, the future is unlimited.”

Using the foundation she receives at SGU, Ms. Grant is committed to making a lasting difference in returning to the Native American Reservation.

“I can’t wait to get back,” she said. “I want to prove to them in person that you can never give up. It’s never too late to make your dreams come true.”

Taylor James

Hometown: Forest City, NC

Her commitment: Rural medicine

In rural America, state-of-the-art technology and a wealth of resources may only be found at a great distance. Growing up in the foothills of North Carolina, Taylor James has seen the consequences of such deficiencies firsthand—and they have shaped her career path.

When she was just four years old, her father passed away after a medical mishap during a surgical procedure on his hand. According to Ms. James, the anesthetic was administered in a blood vessel, inadvertently numbing his heart, and no available medication could reverse the effect. She attributes the mistake, in part, to a lack of resources at her local hospital.

“I didn’t really recognize it until I moved away and saw what other places are like,” said Ms. James, now a first-term student at St. George’s University. “As I grew older, I better understood what happened to my dad, why it happened, and now I want to figure out how to combat these problems in small towns like mine.”

She has been laser focused—graduating a semester early from North Carolina State University, with a degree in human biology. During her studies, she gained valuable clinical experience at the University of North Carolina’s emergency medicine department as well as WakeMed Cary Hospital.

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As a Spanish minor, she also completed a doctor shadowing assignment in Spain, an experience she said: “instilled the importance of cultural competence.” She has used her bilingualism to communicate with—and ease the minds of—Spanish-speaking patients.

While she is keeping her options open, Ms. James is leaning toward a career in primary care, to become a valuable resource in a community that needs it. She even foresees opening up her own family medicine clinic and is grateful for the financial flexibility she has to do so through receiving the Equity in Medicine Scholarship from SGU.

“I was so shocked and so thankful to receive the scholarship,” she said. “I have really enjoyed my first few weeks at SGU. It’s a lot of studying—which I expected—but I don’t think I expected the overwhelming amount of resources and support SGU provides to ensure that we’re successful.”

– Brett Mauser

SGU ranks as #1 source of physicians in US workforce

In cities and towns across the United States, in specialties spanning all of medicine, St. George’s University graduates are making an undeniable impact on healthcare.

According to a recent report from the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB), 11,627 SGU graduates were licensed to practice medicine in the US in 2019, making it the largest source of doctors for the entire US workforce—ahead of any other US or international medical school.

“We stand back and marvel at the outstanding work being done by our graduates in all corners of the US and the world,” said Dr. G. Richard Olds, president of SGU. “The impact that they have made—and will continue to make—on patients, their families, and their communities is truly immeasurable.”

SGU alumni are crucial to addressing the country’s physician shortage, which is projected to climb as high as 139,000 across all specialties by 2033 according to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). This shortage is attributed to population growth and aging, as well as large portion of the physician workforce nearing retirement age.

 

In 2021, more than 1,070 SGU graduates will begin their residencies across the United States, marking the seventh year in a row in which SGU was the number one provider of new doctors to the US healthcare system per data as of April 2021. They’ll enter 21 different specialties ranging from neurology and orthopedic surgery to pathology and anesthesiology.

Hundreds of these grads will enter primary care, a field in dire need of physicians in the United States. According to the US Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), more than 83 million Americans live in primary care health professional shortage areas (HPSA).

“We are proud of the impact that our graduates have had in the US and around the world,” said Dr. Richard Liebowitz, vice chancellor of SGU. “As a University, we look forward to providing a sturdy foundation for our students to become well-equipped, well-rounded physicians for many years to come.”

– Brett Mauser

MD Grad Is Addressing Another Major Public Health Issue—HIV

Jeremy Aguinaldo, MD ’17, looks at disease not only from up close—with each individual patient—but from a bird’s eye view. A board-certified public health physician for Compass Care in the Georgia Department of Public Health, Dr. Aguinaldo identifies risk factors and problem areas for large populations, and implements programs to improve community health.

“The improvement of an individual’s health also requires improving the entire healthcare system,” said Dr. Aguinaldo, who recently completed his public health and preventive medicine residency at Morehouse School of Medicine.

While countries around the world deal with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, Dr. Aguinaldo is addressing a problem that continues to plague his community—the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

How serious is the current HIV problem in the United States?

More than a million people in the United States are living with HIV, and in 2018, there were about 36,000 new cases. Contracting HIV is no longer considered a death sentence as it was before. With the continued advancements of antiretroviral drugs to manage the virus, HIV had become a chronic illness, similar to how diabetes and blood pressure are managed.

What measures are you taking to help prevent the spread of HIV in your community?

When a patient initially tests positive for HIV, he or she is immediately sent to the clinic where they are linked to care and started on antiretroviral treatments. Patients who start on medication soon after diagnosis have shown to have better outcomes compared to those start much later. By taking the prescribed medications, the viral load (the amount of HIV in the body) is reduced. By reducing the viral load to such a level, it becomes undetectable by standard blood tests.

Patients who maintain an undetectable status will continue to be healthy and prevent transmission, which is referred to as “treatment as prevention.” This is key in preventing HIV spread in the community. The clinic also promotes the use of Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), which, when taken daily, is successful in preventing infection with HIV, greatly reducing the risk. It’s also important to raise awareness and educate the community on the benefits of using PrEP.

Dr. Aguinaldo as a medical student in Grenada

What social or economic trends are tied to HIV cases and transmissions?

There is a significant risk of HIV infection in those with mental health illnesses. The common conditions include depression, anxiety, bipolarity, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), schizophrenia, and dementia. These issues make drug adherence much more difficult to comply with and increase high-risk behaviors such as illicit substance use and unprotected sexual activities.

Many individuals in the community I serve are homeless, unemployed, or lack health insurance and thus struggle to make ends meet. They consider their HIV status less of a priority until their own basic needs are met. This is where addressing those social factors, as well as managing them, clinically come into play.

Why has public health become the focus of your career?

When I was getting my master’s degree in public health, I learned from nurses, doctors, statisticians, researchers, engineers, and others who all shared a common goal: to improve the health of the population. Healing is more than just prescribing a simple pill but also collaborating with a team of multiple disciplines to help the patient.

Dr. Aguinaldo’s cancer research presentation as an SGU student

SAS Student Balances Parenthood And Pursuit Of Business Degrees

Currently pursuing a double major in business management and tourism and hospitality management at St. George’s University School of Arts and Sciences, Gillian Francis, BSc ’22 (expected), performs the balancing act between motherhood and academia daily.  Although the journey to graduation has presented its share of challenges, she hopes to inspire other parents who are eager to advance their education, but are concerned about being able to manage parenthood, university life, and everything that comes along with it.

SGU News reached out to Ms. Francis to learn how she spends a typical day as a mom and student, the advice she would offer to other parents, and how she manages it all.

St. George’s University: Why did you decide to pursue your studies at SGU?

Gillian Francis: SGU offered the perfect blend of what I needed in terms of locale, financial affordability, and academic programs. I never have to leave my family to pursue my studies as the University is right here at home. The 90 percent scholarship offered to all Grenadian citizens also piqued my interest as I was able to further my education in the area I most desired, particularly tourism and hospitality management.

SGU: What does a typical day look like for you as a mom/student?

Francis: Now that classes are virtual, a typical day for me is extremely busy, as I have to attend my classes, ensure that my son attends his classes (online as well), prepare meals in between classes, and fit my assignments—and his—into my schedule. I don’t have much spare time so planning is very crucial for me in order to get things done.

SGU: How are you able to balance parenthood and academia amidst a pandemic?

Francis: My way of balancing both worlds is through daily and weekly planning of all the things I must get done. That includes classes and assignments, household chores, and simply being a mom. As part of my self-care routine, I watch a little television, listen to music, go to the beach, or exercise at least once a week.

SGU: What has your favorite class been so far and why?

Francis: I must say that I really enjoyed and learned a lot from Destination Marketing and Quality Customer Service. It gave me a bird’s eye view of the many things involved in marketing a destination, and the wider concept of service and its importance. Both courses offered theoretical and practical experience of what goes into marketing a destination and in the service industry.

SGU: Have you taken advantage of any other services offered by the University?

Francis: Yes, I often utilize the peer learning group sessions which can be found at the Department of Educational Services, as I find it a great form of revision and a means of clearing up misconceptions. Also, as the newly elected secretary for the Business Students Association for the second time in a row, I am able to provide assistance to fellow business students and contribute to their overall development.

SGU: What advice would you give to a parent interested in attending SGU?

Francis: It is worth it—just take everything one step at a time. Do not take on more courses than you can handle, plan consistently, and ensure to make time for yourself and your family.

 

– Tornia Charles

 

From Politics to Academia

When Dr. Damian Greaves changed course in his career, switching from politics to academic, he had always intended to return. But more than 15 years into his time as an educator at St. George’s University, he has reveled in the opportunity to pass on his knowledge to future leaders in Grenada and throughout the Caribbean. 

“When I teach, I am on top of the world because it is not just a job, it is a vocation—to inspire and mold minds,” said Dr. Greaves, a professor in the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences. 

He came to St. George’s University in 2006 after spending five years as the Minister of Health in St. Lucia, first serving as a part-time lecturer while working on a Master of Public Health (MPH) from SGU, and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) at Walden University.  

“Leveraging on various experiences gives a broader view on what is happening, and therefore translates to a more panoramic and rigorous analysis of matters that may come to my attention,” said Dr. Greaves. “It also gives you a more global prospective.”

Roles Run the Gamut

Even with all of his roles at SGU, he traveled to St. Lucia monthly to attend parliamentary sessions. All told, the former Minister served 15 years in politics, including three as senator, for which he led the opposition in the House. Dr. Greaves was also Minister for Culture and Community Development. His passion for culture led him to write songs, own a Carnival band, and participate in calypso competitions.  

Nevertheless, Dr. Greaves remained at SGU as an instructor, teaching Social Sciences and Medicine to premedical and preveterinary students, as well as sociology courses such as Race, Class and Gender; Caribbean Social Structure; Caribbean Government and Politics; and Introduction to Political Science. 

When you are teaching, you have to be well read. One of your toolkits is to continue to research and read, particularly in this ever-evolving technical age.” Dr. Greaves said. “If you’re a sociologist and you don’t have a working knowledge of economics, political science, other areas of social sciences and even outside of those, your analysis will be the limited because you must engage other subject matters that impact what you’re interrogating.” 

He also leads a very active campus life, serving as president of the School of Arts and Sciences Senate as well as the University Senate. He is also a member of various committees such as the Graduate and Undergraduate Committees, Accreditation Committee, and SGU IRB; a body with a mandate to review the content of research studies. 

Outside of SGU, Dr. Greaves is the director of the Healthy Caribbean Coalition, sits on the National Advisory Board for National Health Insurance, and is chair of the Grenada National Commission on Non-Communicable Diseases, a position he has held since 2017Dr. Greaves is also writing his first book, which focuses on health management in the Caribbean.   

– Tornia Charles

The News Stories that Defined the School of Medicine in 2020

2020 Top News Stories

For a wide range of reasons, 2020 is a year that we won’t soon forget—from the heroism on the front lines of medicine, powerful demonstrations surrounding racial equality, and the change to our day-to-day lives and our perspectives.

It was a monumental year in so many ways for St. George’s University School of Medicine, its faculty, staff, and students. SGU made history when students and graduates secured 1,124 residency positions across the US and Canada in 2020—a 95 percent residency placement rate for eligible 2020 US graduates who applied for US residencies* and a record for the University. Over the summer, approximately 450 of those grads began their residencies in New York-New Jersey area hospitals, some of the hardest-hit hospitals in the nation during the early days of the COVID pandemic.

SGU profiled many alumni across specialties and locales who tirelessly donated their time and services to help those suffering from the disease, some of those who sacrificed seeing their own families to help the sickest of COVID patients.

It was also a year in which diversity and equality was brought to the limelight. The University had frank discussions with its entire community about the importance of listening, learning, and supporting, not only in the current climate but going forward.

These are the stories that underscore the School of Medicine’s strengths and define us as a University as we aim to enhance student success and grow the number of healthcare professionals around the world. Read on to see the top news stories of 2020 on SGU.edu.

*SGU student data as of November 2020

Match Day 2020

Match Day 2020

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, SGU students and graduates were called on to assist in the fight against the virus. On Match Day 2020 in March, they learned of where they would begin their career as physicians. Positions were secured across a wide range of specialties—including anesthesiology, emergency medicine, orthopedic surgery, pathology, and many more—and spanned across the United States.

All told, 1,124 SGU graduates had started residency in the US and Canada in 2020, which equals a 95 percent residency placement rate for eligible 2020 US graduates who applied for US residencies*—a record for the University—including some 450 SGU grads in New York-New Jersey area hospitals. They joined a proud network of 18,000 SGU physicians who have made a difference in healthcare around the world.

*SGU student data as of November 2020

 

A Conversation on Diversity in the Medical Profession: Thoughts from SGU’s Student National Medical Association

With the tragic deaths of people like George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and many others, and as social justice events were held around the world, SGU News connected with SGU chapter members of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA). The national organization is committed to supporting current and future underrepresented minority medical students by addressing the needs of underserved communities, and increasing the number of “clinically excellent, culturally competent, and socially conscious physicians.” SGU chapter members shared their perspectives on the world around us, the importance of the SNMA’s mission, and how students can get involved.

 

Wyckoff Hospital

SGU Adds New US Clinical Sites for Medical School Student Core Rotations

SGU’s clinical network is growing. This fall, seven US hospitals joined the SGU family, including several in California as well as a new venue into the South that allow third-year medical students to receive core clinical training during a crucial time in healthcare.

These hospitals included:

  • Baton Rouge General Medical Center in Baton Rouge, LA
  • Doctor’s Medical Center in Modesto, CA
  • Hemet Valley Medical Center in Hemet, CA
  • MacNeal Hospital in Maywood, IL
  • Mission Community Hospital in Panorama City, CA
  • Westchester General Hospital in Miami, FL
  • Wyckoff Heights Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY

 

Georgios Mihalopulos, MD '18

True Calling: From the Navy to the OR

Critical problem solving. A wide array of challenges. The operating room was exactly the type of workplace atmosphere that Georgios Mihalopulos, MD ’18, set out to find when he began working toward a career in medicine. It also mirrored his life as an officer in the Canadian Navy, a position that he held before and during medical school.

“I always say I love stress and I hate sleep, so that’s why surgery is the perfect field for me,” said Mihalopulos, now a third-year surgery resident at Waterbury Hospital in Connecticut. “It just seemed like the most natural thing in the world for me to do.”

 

SGU and Grenada partner to address COVID-19 pandemic

As the coronavirus pandemic spread throughout the world, SGU and the Government of Grenada worked hand in hand, developing and operating a COVID testing facility, and bringing in new devices to treat ill patients.

SAS grad: Don’t miss out on “the entire experience” at SGU

2020 graduate Dominic Gaspard has used his degree to earn a teaching position at Anglican High School in St. George’s.

From his time as a student at St. George’s University, Dominic Gaspard values the people he met and the adventures he went on as much as foundation it provided for his career

“If you come to SGU with the mindset of obtaining a degree as fast as possible, you would have missed the entire experience,” said the 2020 School of Arts and Sciences alum who earned degrees in international business as well as accounting and finance.

Currently a teacher at the Anglican High School in Grenada, Mr. Gaspard is also a full-time entrepreneur involved in two business ventures, one of which started as a project for the SAS Principles of Marketing course in which they were tasked with creating a marketing plan for a new product. Their product of choice: insect repellent candles.

SAS grad Dominic Gaspard encourages students to take advantage of the “entire experience” at SGU

After receiving positive reviews, he encouraged his classmates to join him in pursuing the concept further. They later took the idea to the Grenada Industrial Development Corporation’s Young Innovators Challenge where similar sentiments were echoed.

“Most of my time at SGU was actually spent with the SGU community and forming relationships. I’ve learned so much more outside the classroom thanks to the network I’ve built,” said Mr. Gaspard. “The level of student support and student engagement greatly enhanced my studies, especially given the additional responsibilities at home with my mom.”

The highlight of his time was the opportunity to participate in the 2018 Global X-Culture Conference and Symposium held at the University of Macerata in Italy. There he competed among 140 students from 29 countries, and he and his team captured one of only four company challenge trophies. In addition, the international experience provided him with the opportunity to learn about various cultures, interact with different nationalities and understand the importance of global perspectives.

“To SGU, I would say thank you—it’s the most enlightening experience I have ever had is my university experience,” he said. “That slogan ‘Think Beyond’ is something that has been branded into me and I don’t see the world the same way as I used to. I’m always looking at the bigger picture.”

It was not only a reward for him and his colleagues, but when he was faced with personal challenges leading up the Symposium—prompting him to second-guess his participation—he was instead buoyed by the enormous outpouring of support from his fellow classmates, as well as faculty and staff alike.

“I have been involved with another universities, and when I assess the level of student support systems SGU has in place, I can tell there is a conscious effort to take care of both students and staff,” he said.

During his time at SGU, Mr. Gaspard was also named president of the Business Students Association and served as a key member of the orientation team.  For those who aspire to pursue any number of careers locally, regionally, or around the world, he would implore them weigh all their options but also to know that “being a product of St. George’s University, including the quality of the education, the level of student support, and the extensive ability to network, prepares you for life.”

– Tornia Charles

Then a student, Dominic Gaspard (left), aided by his team of international students, was presented with one of the four company challenge trophies at the 2018 Global X-Culture Conference and Symposium held in Italy.

4 Generations of Nurses: The Solomon Legacy Continues at SGU

Nursing student Molly Solomon (left) with her mother, Dr. Jennifer Solomon, who are part of a long line of nurses in the family.

On Jennifer Solomon’s bookshelf sits “The Complete System of Nursing”, a book passed down from through the generations of nurses in her family. The book’s inside front cover includes handwritten notes from her now deceased mother and grandmother, pearls of wisdom and inspiration that she holds dear.

Dr. Solomon, the chair of nursing and allied health science at St. George’s University, beams with pride when talking about her predecessors in the field, and especially so when discussing the fourth-generation nurse to be—her daughter, now a first-term student at SGU this fall.

“It’s such a proud feeling to be part of this family of nurses as I’ve gained all the principles passed on through the years,” according to Dr. Solomon.

As a soon-to-be nurse herself, her daughter, Molly, feels she has benefitted immensely from the values passed down through the generations. “I feel that being a fourth-generation nurse has given me a chance to pass on and learn the amazing and life changing skills nurses have,” she said. “It has helped me as a nursing student by seeing the bigger picture, how my mother, grandmother, and great grandmother have impacted their world, and the fact that I have a chance to help and change my generation as a nurse pushes me to be the best I can.”

 

 

“Nursing teaches you communication skills, critical thinking, people management, cultural nuances, and other life skills that you need,” Dr. Solomon added. “You are there at people’s most vulnerable moments. It is such an honor and privilege to be there when someone needs you.”

Although she was never “urged” to enter nursing, Dr. Solomon recalls aspiring to be like her mom, who was well respected in the community and worked long hours, yet still managed to attend all her extracurricular activities. Her grandmother attended nursing school in the late 1950s in Manchester, England, a time when there was little psychological support to nurses experiencing trauma from patient ordeals.

Dr. Solomon, too, studied nursing in England, a certification that has allowed her to travel extensively while working, and opened the door to a new life in Grenada. She and her husband visited the island while sailing throughout the Caribbean from England, and enjoyed it so much that they decided to make it their home.

Although the first three generations of nurses were trained in England, her daughter, Molly, will learn in a vastly different environment—Grenada. Nurse Solomon praises St. George’s University’s nursing program as it equips students with the tools and support needed to manage any traumatic experiences had while training.

 

“You are there at people’s most vulnerable moments. It is such an honor and privilege to be there when someone needs you.”

 

“I had the opportunity to send my daughter to the UK to study nursing, but I honestly believe in this program,” said Doctor Solomon.

The three-year nursing program leads to graduates being eligible to sit the Regional Exam for Nursing Registration (RENR) exam which, upon successful completion, allows students to for acquire licensure to work as registered nurses in the CARICOM member states.

“As a first-year nursing student, I am excited and intrigued as to what the nursing program can offer for me,” said Molly Solomon. “Thus far, looking at the courses I will be taking, I am ready for the challenge.”

For more information on the St. George’s University degree in General Nursing, please visit the website or register for a virtual information session delivered by the School of Arts and Sciences where your most important questions will be answered.

– Tornia Charles