What began as a routine medical mission trip to the Dominican Republic, is now a campus-wide movement to connect ONU students with service opportunities around the globe.
The new student organization Northern Without Borders adds a distinctly international feel to Northern’s nearly 200 other student organizations.
When students, Kyle Stinehart, a senior molecular biology and management major from Pemberville, Ohio, Ashley Tyger, a fourth-year pharmacy major from Pleasant, Pa., Lisa Berni, a fourth-year pharmacy major from Dennison, Ohio, Jordan Miller, a senior accounting major from Millersburg, Ohio, and faculty member Robin White, assistant professor of nursing, returned from a week of helping hundreds of Dominicans in remote mountain villages, they did so with a new perspective.
“The trip helped me realize what real problems are and gave me a new appreciation for all that I have in life,” said Tyger.
Working in makeshift clinics, the team worked with a young physician from the Dominican Republic providing basic health services for hundreds of men, women, and children each day. They handed out antiparasitic medicines, 30-day supplies of vitamins, toothbrushes, toothpaste, and bandages, emptying the 10 suitcases of donated supplies they brought with them.
The trip made such an impact, that the participants brought back the idea of connecting ONU students with opportunities to serve those abroad as well as at home.
“I’ve always been told that an experience such as our trip to the Dominican Republic would change your life forever,” said Berni. “And it did.”
Now, thanks to Northern Without Borders, ONU students will bring about change for others as well as for themselves. Already, 40 students and faculty members have pledged to serve in the Dominican Republic during the first week of August this year, and plans are underway to add more sites and dates for next year.
To learn more about Northern Without Borders, contact Robin White.