Union College Students to Help in Third World Country

By: Rachael Witter

Three months in a third world country. It's a real life adventure for some Union College students. As part of the international rescue and relief program, sixteen juniors and seniors will head to Nicaragua in the spring. The students will be divided into teams, and each team will teach a class on healthy living. One team is targeting malaria prevention…they're bringing mosquito nets to distribute.
“Malaria is a really preventable disease I think. So by taking those down there we're hoping to bring people into the classes so they'll come learn about malaria and how to prevent it and that way we'll make a bigger difference once we leave.” said Union College senior Courtney Laubach.
Students learn search and rescue skills, water rescue and disaster response skills and get certified as EMTs before leaving for their trip.
“I think the ability to improvise under pressure is really the most valuable and when you're in a situation like that you don't have a lot of resources so students are forced to come up with creative ideas and the ability to think creatively is just huge.” said class instructor Aaron Kent.
The students also get to take part in a 2 week long river trip, where they'll stop at villages and set up free clinics.
“I'm really excited to make a difference permanently down there because even though we're going down there for 3 months we're really not gonna be able to do a whole lot in the big picture but once we leave hopefully they'll be able to use a lot of the stuff we leave with them.” said Laubach.