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ALUMNI CORNER: Shannon Brown '15

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Hometown: Medford Lakes, New Jersey
Major at Ferrum: Chemistry & Health Sciences (double major)
Sport at Ferrum: Women's Lacrosse
Shannon Brown '15
After graduating from Ferrum in May of 2015, Shannon Brown enrolled as a dual student in Campbell University’s College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences in the Doctor of Pharmacy and Master of Science in Public Health program. In the summer of 2016, Brown was one of seven public health students that made a two-week trip to Zorange, Haiti, as part of Campbell's connection with the Hopes for Haiti Foundatuon. Campbell's Chairman of Public Health Dr. David Tillman accompanied the students. This was the second year that the foundation made the trip to Zorange.

Brown's Story

During our stay, we were able to add on to the medical database created during last year’s trip, rework the database to fix any bugs that had appeared, and continue to convert the paper copies of the patient files into the system. We were also able to create a new, more complex medical database for the midwife at the clinic. Since the clinic in Zorange has limited access to Wifi, all of these systems had to be made in Excel, which is very time-consuming and involves endless amounts of coding and recoding to make the system function properly. To take a break from inputting data, our team also taught English classes to the Hopes for Haiti staff from the clinic and local school.

The foundation has been teaching English to the staff for over a year, so we were able to pick up where the last group had left off, which involved teaching medical terms, parts of the body, foods, drinks, irregular verbs, and more. Teaching was such a rewarding experience that allowed us to learn Creole as the staff learned English during our daily lessons. We often played review games like Jeopardy, Pictionary, or Guess That Word, which allowed us to interact with the staff and allowed the staff to actively participate and apply the information they were learning each day.
Unlike last year’s trip, this year we were able to hike or take motorcycles to nearby schools to administer Vitamin A and Albendazole to children between the ages of 6 months and 61 months because the Hopes for Haiti foundation was awarded 500 doses of Vitamin A and Albendazole to dispense from Vitamin Angels. By partnering with local schools, we were able to target younger students who attended these schools along with getting the word out to mothers and families in the area with young children, which improved our success rate and exceeded the number of doses we had planned to administer during our time in Haiti. Vitamin A was given to children to help with eyesight and the formation of skin and teeth, and Albendazole was given to children to prevent or treat parasitic worms.
Along with taking part in these activities, we were able to go into the local school in Zorange to teach English classes for the high school students and teach nursery rhymes to the preschoolers. We focused on working with the students to improve their pronunciation and sentence formation. During our free time, we played basketball and soccer and spent time getting to know the students and staff to learn about their daily life and culture and answer any questions they had about us or help them work on their English in any way they desired.Shannon Brown '15

Overall, the trip was a once in a lifetime experience and I can't wait to have the opportunity to go back and visit again. I couldn't have asked to be surrounded by a better group of people and I had an amazing time learning about the culture, history, and way of life in Zorange. It truly is a beautiful place inside and out, and the food was unbelievable and doesn't compare to anything you could get in the United States!

Her Own Words

"Our group was blessed with the opportunity to spend time in a beautiful community that welcomed us openly and allowed us to learn and engage in their culture. This gave us a better understanding of how we could give back to the community and maximize our efforts to better suit the community’s needs. I'm grateful to Campbell's Public Health program for the opportunity to go on this trip because it was such a rewarding experience that allowed me to grow on an individual and professional level."

My Ferrum Days

Brown was an All-Conference and All-State women's lacrosse player at Ferrum. She also earned many academic awards along the way, including Academic All-Conference, Academic All-State and Academic All-District.Shannon Brown '15

"Throughout my athletic career, I was able to find my second family, support system, and an amazing coach who encouraged me to become the best teammate, friend, and leader I could be both on and off the field. Playing women's lacrosse at Ferrum for three short years was a one-of-a-kind experience that taught me the importance of time management, hard work and the determination needed to achieve my goals and become the trusted healthcare professional I strive to be."