2013-11-29 / Community Events

Georgia Regents University students get a crash course in military life

By Nick Spinelli
Fort Gordon Public Affairs Office

Earlier this month, members of the Fort Gordon community visited Georgia Regents University in Augusta for a series of lectures trying to explain military life. According to Nora Zeidan, the medical student responsible for setting up the event, it was an important opportunity for the students.

“I think it was especially impactful for those who have military spouses, as there are a few in my class,” she said. “I have heard great things from those who attended. Everyone seemed to appreciate the information presented, and I think they will be more conscious of meeting patients who have military connections.”

The sessions ran from Nov. 11 through 14, and covered topics such as understanding military culture, working with combat veterans, the role of family members, and women’s health in the military. The overall goal was for the medical students to receive some understanding of military life and how it impacts those who are a part of it.

“There’s a deficit when it comes to educating medical students about this potential patient population,” Zeidan said. “At some point in our careers, we will all most likely be interacting with patients who have ties to the military, and knowing that culture can go a long way in helping to find the best methods for treating them.”

According to Zeidan, the idea for the series came from Joining Forces, a White House initiative designed to assist and support military families. She said that considering GRU’s proximity to Fort Gordon, it was a great opportunity to allow the student body access to information on individuals and families who they may very well be working with one day.

“I was able to learn a lot just from contacting people in order to set this up,” Zeidan said. And the school responded very well. We had a lot of interest from students whether they had a connection to the military or not. We also had a very positive response from the faculty.”

Shawn Williams, mobilization and deployment program manager for Fort Gordon’s Army Community Services assisted Zeidan on the lecture series and agrees that it was a great opportunity for both the school and for Fort Gordon.

“To be able to get out there and have family members tell their stories, it goes a long way in helping these students understand the challenges military families face,” she said.

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