Kamara Gardner

MPH Candidate, Health Behavior Health Education

“College is a privilege. Let’s talk about it one day.” I wrote as a caption on a photo I’d taken just outside of Kahn Auditorium. It was a 60-degree day in November in Michigan, which I found quite odd. Amid worrisome thoughts, I’d begun to realize something. Here I am, on a sunny day, with nothing but time to study the subject I love as I wait for my next class. And, I think to myself, how often do we take things for granted by worrying about small things and not living in the moment?

In the Fall of 2022, I took a global health course that provided me the opportunity to learn about global health inequities regarding infectious disease, sexual and gender minority health, and globalization. It exposed me to the freedoms and privileges that we take for granted every day as Americans. As a 2nd year student, I felt so silly to have taken this course in the last year of the program, because I would have loved to explore global health work. I’d tell 1st-year students, I wish I would’ve taken this course sooner because it would’ve shifted my summer experience search. To my surprise, I’d had one more opportunity to dive deeper into global health, the Public Health in Action - Grenada course.

I was ecstatic to receive my acceptance into this course and I cannot believe that we are now just a week away from our departure to Grenada. In Grenada, I will be working alongside the Ministry of Social and Community Development, Housing, and Gender Affairs to produce an Infectious Disease Protocol and educational materials on Dementia. I am feeling an array of emotions from excitement to nervousness. I anticipate that developing the protocol and materials will be a challenging, yet rewarding experience and I am looking forward to working with my colleagues and project leads on these deliverables. 

Aside from our project, I am excited about witnessing the beautiful landscape of Grenada. I’ve watched video logs on Grenada and I can only imagine how things (i.e., beaches) will look in person.

My personal goal during this trip is to learn more about the culture of Grenada, strengthen my public health skills in qualitative research and global health, and leave with lasting memories and bonds. Until next time, see you in Grenada!