In January 2019, fifteen students and two clinical faculty members of the Long Island Doctor of Audiology Consortium joined the Starkey Hearing Foundation (SHF) as part of their Global-Based Hearing Health Care program, “So the World May Hear,” and traveled to Peru, South America to provide free hearing healthcare and services to underserved communities.
In January 2019, fifteen students and two clinical faculty members of the Long Island Doctor of Audiology Consortium
, which offers a clinical doctorate in audiology through the cooperation of Adelphi University, Hofstra University and St. John’s University, joined the Starkey Hearing Foundation (SHF) as part of their Global-Based Hearing Health Care program, “So the World May Hear,” and traveled to Peru, South America to provide free hearing healthcare and services to underserved communities. In ten days, they traveled to 3 cities in Peru and helped to register over 1,500 patients, provided ear screenings and ear cleanings, identified hearing loss, fit proper amplification and made sure the patients were thoroughly counseled.
Meaghan Curley, a current third-year student says, “Having the opportunity, as a student, to visit Peru on a hearing humanitarian trip this January was nothing short of a life-changing experience. Providing hearing health care and seeing the smiling faces of those who no longer have to live in a world of silence has forever left a mark on our hearts. As much as we were able to give the gift of hearing, we believe that this experience was just as much a gift to us, I learned so much about myself and the type of clinician that I would like to become when I begin my career as an Audiologist”.
The students all expressed that the experience in collaboration with Starkey Hearing Foundation was genuinely life-changing for them. Third-year student, Emily Norton added, “To be able to work as a team with my classmates, professors and Starkey members to give the people in Peru the ability to hear better and improve their circumstances was incredible. The love from the patients that I came in contact with will stay with me forever and I know that I will be a better audiologist due to this incredible experience.
“As students prepare to enter the profession of Audiology as practicing clinicians they need to be prepared for the diverse under-served patient population that they may encounter; this opportunity widens their clinical experiences and patient encounters, helping them gain a new perspective on life and their chosen careers. It is critical, especially in today’s global-minded society that students have a solid understanding of different cultures, people of different linguistic backgrounds and especially the different health disparities seen around the world. I believe that by creating these student based global learning experiences we have the opportunity to help our students increase their worldview perspectives and that they will be better equipped to address the present and future hearing health disparities that they may encounter” states Dr. Ianthe Dunn-Murad, the Au.D. clinical program coordinator. We thank the Starkey Hearing Foundation for their support in this initiative.