Rising Senior Recognized for Academic Excellence After Study Abroad Experience

JULY 20, 2016 - Health care management & policy major Sarah Berg (NHS’17) enjoyed a productive study abroad experience in Copenhagen, where she earned an award for academic excellence.

The rising senior from southern New Jersey says she has enjoyed her education on the Hilltop and looks forward to continuing on, after graduation, as a medical student at Georgetown University School of Medicine.

NHS: How are you enjoying Georgetown and your major at the School of Nursing & Health Studies?

SB: Over the past three years, Georgetown has gone from a place where I go to school to a place that I am happy and proud to call home. Apart from all of the obvious opportunities that Georgetown has to offer in terms of academics, extra-curricular activities, and the like, the main thing that I fell in love with is the inherent sense of community, and the dedication to the Jesuit mission and values. Cura personalis, the Georgetown mission of caring for the whole person, resonates with me because of my interest in medicine.

Nowhere on Georgetown’s campus is the notion of community embodied more than in the NHS. With small classes, enthusiastic professors, and dedicated faculty and staff, the NHS is an extended family, ready to challenge, encourage, support, and celebrate each and every member. This sense of community isn’t confined just to the classroom, but can also be found in school- wide barbeques, potluck Thanksgiving dinners, and even our yearly Fall Ball.

Within the NHS itself, I have found that the ideal of caring for the whole person has impacted my education by broadening my outlook on the health care system, and what it can and should entail. Specifically, the health care management & policy major has encouraged me to consider a multidimensional perspective on health and health care issues. Through exposure to health policy, health care financing, and health administration, in conjunction with the traditional pre-med classes, the major is preparing me to care for the total patient, being mindful of their physical, emotional, mental, spiritual, social, and economic needs. I truly believe that the HCMP major is preparing me to be a better doctor by giving me the tools to navigate an increasingly complex and ever changing health care system.  

NHS: Tell our readers about your study abroad experience.

SB: I studied abroad at the Danish Institute for Study Abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark. While at DIS, I was enrolled in the Medical Practice and Policy Program and also completed an independent research project focusing on infant mortality in Denmark. Through this project, I investigated the programs and policies used by the Danish health care system to address the issue of infant mortality.  I will be continuing this research as part of my senior thesis in which I will be conducting a comparative analysis of infant mortality between the U.S. and Denmark.

Apart from academics, my study abroad experience allowed me to explore Denmark and Europe as a whole. During my semester, I had the opportunity to visit numerous countries and cities, seeing everything from Austrian palaces and Polish churches to Finnish islands and Norwegian fjords. In Denmark itself, I had the opportunity to immerse myself in a tight-knit society that is filled with history and culture. This experience was made all the more memorable by my decision to live with a Danish host family, who were eager to show me around, help with the language, and introduce me to the Danish idea of “hygge” or coziness.

NHS: We learned that you were honored with an award. Congratulations. Tell us about it.

SB: I was awarded the Academic Excellence Award for the Medical Practice and Policy Program after being nominated by my course assistant.

NHS: What are you planning for the future?

SB: Moving forward, I’m excited to start my senior year at Georgetown where I will be pursing my degree. While I am excited to be a senior, I know that this year will prove to be bittersweet.  Following graduation, I will be attending Georgetown’s School of Medicine through the Early Assurance Program.

I couldn’t be any prouder than to be a double Hoya and can’t wait to spend more time on the Hilltop.

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