American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine (AUC) and the American Red Cross (Red Cross) have established a partnership to provide opportunities for AUC medical students and alumni to contribute to Red Cross programs across the country.
The academic service learning agreement mirrors past organized efforts between AUC and the Red Cross in cities such as New York, Detroit, Los Angeles and Miami, as well in St. Maarten where the medical school’s campus is located. The agreement paves the way for AUC to help support Red Cross chapters through coordinated community initiatives.
“This expanded relationship with the Red Cross supports our institution’s focus on educating physicians who are socially accountable and engaged citizens,” said Dr. Heidi Chumley, executive dean and chief academic officer of AUC. “Community service is an important part of AUC’s culture and this partnership provides students with opportunities to remain engaged with communities as they complete training in the U.S.”
“I’m delighted to support AUC’s commitment to foster community health by engaging their medical students in academic service learning and alumni as Red Cross volunteers,” said Linda MacIntyre, chief nurse for the American Red Cross. “This is a great way to leverage the work of our organizations to better serve communities and families.”

Dean Heidi Chumley (center) with AUC students and American Red Cross representatives at the partnership kickoff event.

The program will be piloted with the Red Cross’ Greater Miami and the Keys Chapter, which provides essential aid to a diverse set of communities with unique health and safety challenges. The chapter serves nearly two million Florida residents. AUC students and alumni will be able to participate in the chapter’s priority initiatives, including:

  • Case management for families displaced by natural disasters or fires
  • Emergency preparedness training for local businesses, schools and organizations
  • Fire prevention education and services, such as smoke detector installation
  • CPR training for local businesses, schools and organizations
  • Support services for family members of the armed services

In conjunction with the announcement, AUC and the Red Cross will host a home fire prevention event Saturday, Oct. 22, in Miami. Volunteers will go door to door to check or install smoke alarms, and help families create emergency check lists and escape plans.
“Having AUC as part of the Red Cross team is outstanding. Their culture of community service fits clearly with our mission and we are excited this new relationship is beginning at our Greater Miami and Keys Chapter,” said Alfred Sanchez, Regional CEO of the Red Cross’ South Florida Region.
The new partnership builds on AUC’s portfolio of service learning and community affairs initiatives. AUC has supported numerous programs and organizations, including the St. Maarten Ministry of Public Health and the St. Maarten chapter of the Red Cross, to bring increased health awareness and access to preventive health services to the local community. 

Chris Railey

Posted October 22, 2016 09:12 AM

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