Hurricane Irma Education Response – Gwen Garne

Isabella Powell, a third year AUIS medical student, exemplifies the character and spirit of AUIS School of Medicine. After the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma, Isabella sought out fellow medical students from medical colleges affected by the storm. Fortunately, AUIS students were safe on Barbados.

Isabella also participated in clean-up efforts after 2005 Hurricane Katrina. AUIS CEO, Milo Pinckney, was actively involved in a huge humanitarian effort after Katrina. He founded Operation Brother’s Keepers and enlisted assistance from fellow pilots who flew missions that evacuated 750 families, flew in 150 physicians, and delivered 12 tons of medical supplies for Katrina victims. This was accomplished in only 14 days. All supplies and services were donated as a rapid response to a critical need.

After an email from Isabella, Mr. Pinckney and other management team members immediately began the AUIS response to Irma. The Hurricane Irma Education Relief Response which offers all first and second year medical school students who transfer to claim full tuition paid to their affected medical schools as payment of their tuition to AUIS! Isabella’s caring response triggered this generous offer from AUIS School of Medicine.

This is only a small demonstration of the humanitarian work by AUIS School of Medicine with participation in free health clinics, working with patients to diagnose and treat chronic conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes, hosting a chapter of NORD to conduct research on orphan diseases, offering classes to assist students from all medical schools as they prepare for USMLE exams, and much more. AUIS is constantly looking for ways to assist medical schools and the communities they serve.

Isabella stated, “I am still as pleased with the curriculum and environment at AUIS as when I began two semesters ago. I have chosen to take on the accelerated track and I am still doing well in my course work. I am very thankful that you helped me make the life-changing decision to start my education here at AUIS. This is an incredibly rewarding educational experience.”

Isabella is a transfer student from another Caribbean medical school. After seeing the damage done by Hurricane Irma, she presented a glowing referral for a fellow student from that institution and said her friend is a brilliant medical student who feels underserved by the academic environment at his current medical school and he is also currently being affected by the damage done by Hurricane Irma which has had a terrible effect on the islands of Saba, Anguilla, and St. Maarten.” In conclusion she states, “I recommend acceptance into the Basic Sciences program at AUIS so that he may get the education he truly deserves and flourish as a physician who will positively impact this beautiful Earth.”

Isabella Powell, thank you for recognizing the value of the education offered at AUIS School of Medicine and for being a shining example of the type of physicians we are training at AUIS. Thank you for being the catalyst for the AUIS response to medical school students affected by Hurricane Irma. Thank you for your participation in the humanitarian works performed by AUIS on a daily basis. You and all AUIS School of Medicine students and graduates represent the future of medicine envisioned by AUIS.

To learn more about AUIS School of Medicine visit our website at www.auis.edu or call the Admissions Department at 678-269-4707. To learn more about the AUIS School of Medicine Hurricane Irma Education Response call 770-406-1129 or visit https://www.auis.edu/extras/hardship.html.