Tuesday, June 3, 2014
Frances McGill of Kingstree is on a mission to serve. McGill, a 2009 Williamsburg Academy graduate, is currently in her third year as a student in the University of South Carolina’s South Carolina College of Pharmacy program [Columbia] and is gearing up for an international medical missions trip to serve in Nicaragua for four weeks. The trip, offered through the Palmetto Medical Initiative and USC’s South Carolina College of Pharmacy, will give McGill and another student the opportunity to live and volunteer in El Viejo, Nicaragua for four weeks and serve alongside doctors and pharmacists from the country, who work in clinics already established there.
During their four-week stay, one week will be dedicated to opening the program up to all medical professionals specializing in everything from medical, dental, physical therapy, nursing, etc., and each discipline will join together as a team to go out and set up clinics in several rural communities, performing outreach in areas where many may not have access to the city, which is where the main clinic is located.
McGill, who majored in pharmacy because, “I really want to provide quality care for patients and counsel patients on medications, their health concerns and be a patient advocate. Many people lack access to proper healthcare for various reasons but pharmacies are more readily accessible where someone can come in, ask questions and speak with a healthcare provider who can give them healthcare advice and lead them in the right direction,” also stated that her decision to be a pharmacist was inspired by her time being a member of the Kingstree Community Youth Mission Team in high school. “Having those trips in high school helped me to decide that having a career in serving others was something that I wanted to pursue”, said McGill.
The trip which is in August 2014, is offered through USC’s SC College of Pharmacy and will count towards college credit for McGill but the trip is not paid with her tuition, she will be responsible for raising $3,500 in order to pay for her flight to Nicaragua, lodging in the country for one month, meals, and supplies while there. McGill states anyone interested in helping to support her fundraising efforts for the trip can send a check payable to PMI, PO Box 542, Charleston, SC 29402 with Frances L. McGill on the memo line. All donations are 100 percent tax deductible.
When asked what is she most looking forward to while there, McGill stated, “Combining what I’m going to school for, along with my passion. I’m able to go and serve others while using the knowledge I’ve gained in school for the past three years to help others who are less fortunate.”For more information you can go to www.palmettomedical.org.