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Internships in Seville prepare students for health professions

September 25, 2015

Photo of students visiting the Hospital Universitario Virgen del Rocío in Seville, Spain.

Student interns visit the Hospital Universitario Virgen del Rocío in Seville, Spain. (image provided.)

Clemson’s unique Language and International Health major combines coursework in languages (with concentrations in Spanish and Chinese) and public health.  A highlight of the program for those concentrating in Spanish is the healthcare internship experience in Seville, Spain. Students have the opportunity to complete internships at both public and private hospitals and medical centers. The program also provides an overview of the health system in Spain, specifically in Andalusia, through visits to several local hospitals, a guided tour of the Andalusian School of Public Health in Granada, and the opportunity to interact and converse with local healthcare politicians from Dos Hermanas, a town near Seville.

During the semester-long program, organized through the Centro Internacional de Estudios Culturales (CINECU), students complete five courses for a total of 45 contact hours at Estudios Universitarios y Superiores de Andalucía (EUSA), a private school which has been affiliated with the University of Seville since 1996. Courses focus on improving Spanish linguistic competence and expanding cultural knowledge of Spain, including its medical structure and institutions. Students stay with families in Seville, thereby allowing them to experience the local culture firsthand.

Thanks to Clemson’s agreement with the CINECU, L&IH students studying in Seville can do their internships at the Victoria Eugenia Hospital, a private hospital which belongs to Spain’s Red Cross. It is a 140-hour program in which the students rotate among the different sections of the hospital observing admissions, emergency, intensive care, outpatient, rehabilitation, pharmacy, and surgery.

The internship in health administration allows students to learn about the organization of the healthcare system through direct observations and experiences in hospitals and clinics.  Using their observational and experiential data, as well as information from coursework, students produce a final report, which summarizes and analyzes the differences and/or similarities found between the health systems in the United States and in Spain.

Photo of Students Natalie Kimmey, Chardrevius Martin and Elouis Cram (center) who interned with staff at the San Juan de Dios del Aljarafe Hospital in Seville, Spain.

Students Natalie Kimmey, Chardrevius Martin and Elouis Cram (center) interned with staff at the San Juan de Dios del Aljarafe Hospital in Seville, Spain. (Image provided.)

Chardrevius (Dre) Martin, a senior Language and International Health-Spanish major, spent the spring semester of 2015 in Seville. He plans to pursue a degree in medicine and noted “the knowledge that I learned in these courses will give me a much better understanding of how all types of healthcare systems work.” Dre describes his internship, “I worked in the Department of Preventative Medicine at a hospital outside of the city. I was able to participate in [a] point prevalence study of hospital-associated infections called EPINE/EPPS. This study is done throughout Europe to determine what infections are most prominent and their risk factors. I learned a wealth of knowledge through this study and by following physicians around during consults with patients infected with various infectious diseases.”

Photo of Caroline Korte, Elouise Cram, Michelle Fuentes, and Natalie Kimmey en joy the Feria de abril en Seville, Spain. This week-long festival celebrates the traditional culture of Seville, including flamenco singing and dancing.

Caroline Korte, Elouise Cram, Michelle Fuentes, and Natalie Kimmey enjoy the Feria de abril en Seville, Spain. This week-long festival celebrates the traditional culture of Seville, including flamenco singing and dancing. (Image provided.)

Dre and other students who participate in the internship program not only gain practical experience in the healthcare field but also learn about another culture by living with families, taking courses and making new friends. Dre sums up his experience, “Studying abroad changed me in many ways, but the most important thing it gave me was respect for others and their lifestyles, which goes far beyond just tolerance for those things. If I had the chance, I would do it all over in a heartbeat because […] the wonderful people I met, food I [ate], [and] music I heard all worked together to make Sevilla a place I will always call home.”



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