Nicola Shaw and Kerry Short, are preparing to leave to
experience rural medicine abroad. Photo by Christine
Two University of Otago medical students, Nicola Shaw and
Kerry Short, have received $5000 scholarships to assist their
travel to Nepal, Ecuador, Zambia, and Tanzania next year.
The two fifth-year students are considering rural medical
careers and spent this year studying in Greymouth as part of
the university's Rural Medical Immersion Programme.
The Pat Farry Rural Health Education Trust Travelling
Scholarships will enable them to also immerse themselves in
rural medical programmes overseas.
The New Zealand programme was developed by the late Dr Farry,
a Queenstown GP and medical educationist, in 2007.
Dr Farry was the founding director of Otago University's Te
Waipounamu Rural Health Unit for the education of rural
doctors, and founded the Matagouri Club for undergraduate
students who were interested in rural medicine.
Trust chairman John Farry said the scholarships aimed to help
young people to "spend valuable time in innovative and
challenging overseas situations", and to later become "the
new generation of idea generators" in New Zealand.
The education trust was established in 2010 to support the
sustainability and quality of health services to rural
Ms Short departs later this month for Nepal where she will
join a travelling rural clinic-based programme called "Hope
and Home Nepal".
On Christmas Eve she will arrive in Zambia, Africa, to begin
a six-week placement at the St Francis Hospital, a small base
hospital serving a large rural population.
She is a keen pilot and, during her Zambian visit, has also
arranged to join the Flying Medical Service in Tanzania for
Ms Shaw will travel to Ecuador in late February, joining a
mobile surgical bus operated by the Cinterandes Foundation
for five weeks.
She will then also travel to the St Francis Hospital in