Name: Erina Quinn
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio
Nationality: United States
Languages spoken: English, Spanish (advanced), Portuguese (beginner), Farsi (beginner)
Occupation: Research Assistant at Case Western Reserve University
Volunteer Abroad: Medical Assistance in Quito, Ecuador
Duration: 4 weeks
Start month: April 2018
Why did you decide to become a UBELONG Volunteer?
I wanted to find a way to impact the medical community outside of my home. UBELONG is a trusted organization who has provided stellar opportunities for medical students, like me, to make an impact in underdeveloped regions of the world. The reputation of UBELONG sets them apart from other organizations, which makes me proud to say I was a UBELONG Volunteer.
What was your impact on your volunteer project?
I had a large impact on the community in Tumbaco, Ecuador. I was able to interact with patients and learn about clinical cases while also learning Spanish. Seeing how grateful patients were to have such great care and service locally was inspirational for me and further motivates my desire to be a clinician.
How did you grow personally during your volunteer trip?
Working in the clinic, I was able to learn some clinical skills while also learning intangible lessons that I could not learn anywhere else. I learned about the local culture and concerns in the area and the effects on the local health. I learned how a physician must put the patients first and always adapt to the local needs in the clinic. Ultimately, these lessons have helped shape a background for me as a grow to become a physician.
In a sentence or less, how would you sum up your volunteer experience?
My experience in Quito was inspirational and has shaped me into a more open-minded and culturally aware individual.