Sara Riforgiat '23
When Sara Riforgiat was exploring pharmacy school, she pinpointed a major factor for her final decision: quality opportunities for mission trips.
“Wegmans School of Pharmacy had the most intriguing trips and a variety of different countries to explore.” Riforgiat chose Fisher and started planning for which trip she would take during her studies.
Then, what started as an interesting opportunity quickly became a pivotal encounter in Roatan, Honduras. Riforgiat described her service trip experience as eye-opening. “Every single day I was able to spend there presented me with something different to learn from or learn about.”
She looks forward to making a difference in this “big world” as a health care professional, and she highly recommends Fisher students attend a mission trip. “The people and connections you make while on these trips are something you will truly never forget.”
Samantha Poon ’19
Five months before walking across the stage to earn her diploma, Wegmans School of Pharmacy student Samantha Poon engaged in an Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experiences (APPE) rotation in Pune, India. The trip underscored the impact a pharmacist can make and helped prepare Poon for a career in community pharmacy.
While abroad, she spent one week at a medical camp, developing and managing a process to ensure a smooth workflow to the prescription filling process. She also counseled patients and dispensed medication.
“Even in a setting such as the medical camp where resources are limited, a pharmacist can still provide impactful health education,” she said. “It was a wonderful learning experience and great practice to be placed in such a leadership/management role that is similar to what can be seen in the community pharmacy setting.”
Chelsea Barvian ’21
For Wegmans School of Pharmacy student Chelsea Barvian, working in health care means serving those in need. Putting that philosophy into action, she traveled to Mexico with fellow pharmacy students and undergraduates at Fisher to help deliver care to underserved communities.
In partnership with a local church, Barvian and the Fisher team accompanied health care professionals on home visits, providing blood pressure and blood glucose level screenings, and offering medication consultations. During their week in the village, they also hosted a free health clinic at the church, offering screenings to community members.
“We were able to utilize our knowledge on hypertension and diabetes, which we had already learned in our didactic curriculum, and we had also taken a communications class that helped us learn how to communicate with patients,” Barvian said, noting that the communications course was particularly helpful in understanding how to tailor counseling to each patient.
Lauren Adamchick ’22
Exhausting and busy. Rewarding and indescribable. That’s how Lauren Adamchick, a second-year student in the Wegmans School of Pharmacy, characterizes the medical mission she took to El Salvador.
Working 10-hour days, Adamchick and the School of Pharmacy team spent their time in a primary care health clinic, dispensing medication and working with translators to counsel patients.
“This trip helped bring to life topics we had focused on in school,” she said. “We dispensed a lot of vitamins, Tylenol, and anti-parasitic medication. We were able to use our medical knowledge about different disease states and their treatments to counsel patients on their medications.”