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Enormous goals in nursing start small

"I wouldn't be here if it weren't for you."

Meghan Greeley, who works at the Isaiah Wellness Center, hears these words - or words like them - regularly. The Peace Corps volunteer, who worked as a health educator in rural West Africa, is just one of many students in the schools of nursing, public health and medicine that work with at-risk community members through the East Baltimore Community Nursing Centers. At the Wellness Center and other locations in Baltimore, Johns Hopkins nursing students get the opportunity to apply the skills they learned from textbooks and lectures where they can have maximum impact on the lives of the people in our community.

"There is nothing that substitutes for in-the-field experience," Greeley, a Master of Science in Nursing-Family Nurse Practitioner/Master in Public Health student, said. "There are rarely textbook answers to any of the situations we face. I've learned a great deal also about what happens outside of a formal clinical setting. Truly, I have gained invaluable experience about the real-life challenges and rewards of working with my patient population."

In addition to the school-run programs, students also volunteer in other community service projects, including those at schools, health departments, churches, hospices, HIV AIDS clinics, and local community agencies. The Student Outreach Resource Center (SOURCE) organizes these community volunteer activities for all Johns Hopkins students in nursing, medicine, and public health.

The East Baltimore Community Nursing Centers are just one piece of a wide-reaching set of partnerships the schools of nursing, public health and medicine aid. Johns Hopkins students also work with Bienestar, serving the Hispanic community; Amazing Grandmothers, supporting grandmothers raising grandchildren; the Wald Community Nursing Center, which promotes the health and well-being of uninsured or underserved families and individuals; and House of Ruth, a domestic violence shelter.

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