Grad students travel to Honduras

Brittany Smyth, Staff writer

On Jan. 4-11, seven Physician Assistant Studies graduate students will receive hands-on experience in the medical field in Zambrano, Honduras.

Catherine Gillespie, director and assistant professor of the Physician Assistant program, will be joining the students to share the Mercyhurst Mission. The students will participate with International IMPACT through the Medicine Foundation to provide medical care on this mission trip. IMPACT was founded four years ago to provide medical care to underserved areas around the globe.

“The experience in medicine is valuable, but the experience in humanitarianism is invaluable and life changing,” Gillespie said.

The students are running different fundraisers to cover the cost of the trip. An event will take place in Cocktails & Colors Studio on Saturday, Dec. 5, from 6-8 p.m. Tickets will be sold for $45 and those who participate in this event will paint snow globes. Partial proceeds will be used to raise money for the trip. There are only 34 seats left open for this event.

If students want to donate but can not attend the event, they can show their support by donating to the group’s Go Fund Me account at The physician assistant studies graduate students set a goal of $5,000.

“Students will be mentored by myself and other physician assistants and will have hands-on  experience as they participate in clinics that include three stations: registration/triage, provider, and pharmacy,” said Gillespie.

“This experience is part of an oath a physician assistant takes to ‘give back to the community,’ locally and globally. Medical missions teach more than just third world medicine, this is an experience in humanitarianism and truly a life changing experience.”

Students can sign up for the Cocktails & Colors event on their webpage before Saturday, Dec. 5 to reserve their seat. For more information about donations, visit or contact Catherine Gillespie at