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Shepherd students prepare for Jamaica trip

ISSUED: 1 March 2010
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Owens
(Shepherd students prepare for Jamaica trip)

Shepherdstown, WV--Students from Shepherd's nursing and education departments will be traveling to May Pen, Jamaica, over spring break to serve in hospitals and schools. This is the second time since 2008 that Shepherd has been represented in the Caribbean.

On Thursday, March 11, nine students will depart for Jamaica, returning Sunday, March 21. While there, students will stay on the campus of Middlesex College, a private, liberal arts, technical, and pre-college program granting diplomas, including associate's, bachelor's and master's degrees in certain fields.

During their stay, students will visit Port Antonio, Blue Lagoon, and Blue Mountain Farm to see coffee plants; take a cruise to Pidgeon Island; participate in teaching practicum and nursing clinicals, and take a trip to Ocho Rios, Dunn Rivers Fall.

Dr. Virginia Hicks, dean of the school Education and Professional Studies, said that the trip will provide an opportunity for students to receive international experience and global awareness and to help broaden their perspective in classroom teaching.

"This is an excellent opportunity for education students to see how schools in another country operate," Hicks said.

In 2008, Hicks traveled with eight education students to Mandeville, Jamaica, where they stayed while working in schools in Spalding, Jamaica.

The International Teaching Practicum Experience seminar is open to all students who have been admitted to the teacher education program or nursing program. Students receive three credit hours and must attend five meetings, including a presentation to be given to the campus community upon return of the trip.

According to Hicks, the practicum started as a way to provide an international experience so students would be globally prepared. A $15,000 grant was received from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission to help set up the program, which allows Shepherd to provide assistance to schools in third-world nations, such as Jamaica, to set up nursing programs.

"We're helping them develop collaborative relations," Hicks said.

Students participating in this year's practicum are Emily McCoy, of Berkeley Springs; John Considine, of Charles Town; Amber Galanos, of Harpers Ferry; Candace Corbin, of Hedgesville; Loria Webb, of Martinsburg; Sarah Crickenberger, of Philippi; Sarah Holland, of Mercersburg, PA; Shannhan Elmore, of Berkeley Springs; and Summer McClintock, of Berkeley Springs. To help underwrite costs of the trip, the students hosted a Jamaican dinner fundraiser that featured traditional Jamaican fare, including jerk chicken, conch soup, and Jamaican fruit cake.

For more information, contact Hicks at 304-876-5162 or vhicks@shepherd.edu.

-30-KESNER

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Courtney McCauley (l.), a graduate student, of Charles Town, and Julie Powell, a 2008 graduate of Shepherd, from Bluefield, work with students in Spalding, Jamaica in 2008.

Pictured from left to right, top to bottom, are this year's Jamaica practicum students; Emily McCoy, of Berkeley Springs; John Considine, of Charles Town; Amber Galanos, of Harpers Ferry; Candace Corbin, of Hedgesville; Loria Webb, of Martinsburg; Sarah Crickenberger, of Philippi; Sarah Holland, of Mercersburg, PA; Shannhan Elmore, of Berkeley Springs; and Summer McClintock, of Berkeley Springs.

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