May 2020: Graduating Student finds Inspiration Abroad to Help in Health Services

May 2020: Graduating Student finds Inspiration Abroad to Help in Health Services

Amara Tennessee
Amara Tennessee

Amara Tennessee

Hometown - I was born and raised in Roswell, Georgia.

Major - I am a double major in Public Health and World Languages and Culture. I have a double concentration in Spanish and Spanish for the Professionals and a double minor in Global Health Studies and Latin American, Caribbean & Latino studies.


What made you choose your major?  - I have always been interested in health and in Spanish. I came into college as a freshman Pre-Nursing major, with a Spanish minor, but going into my sophomore year I changed my major to Public Health and made my minor my secondary major. When I graduated highschool in 2015, I moved to Paraguay where I lived and worked as a medical volunteer in both a mobile vaccination clinic and a cardiology and diabetes specialty center. The volunteer work I did there was public health work. I was able to plan programs and work really closely with both patients and professional healthcare staff. That experience molded me both personally and professionally into the person I am today. 


What was your favorite class/professor and why? - My favorite Spanish class was my Spanish for Health Professions I &II with Dr. Holcombe. Our class only had 3 students, but we were able to learn so much about healthcare systems, the role of interpreters in healthcare settings, implicit bias, patient advocacy, and cultural competency. The class really opened my eyes to the inequities and gaps in our healthcare system in relation to non-native English speakers. 
My favorite Public Health class would be my Health Promotion Program Planning class with Dr. Lidstone. This class allowed us to work outside of the classroom in a community called Harrisburg. We were able to spend time with the members of this community and listen to what their needs and concerns were within their community. From there, we helped plan and implement programs in accordance with the needs they specified. This class taught me how to listen to others, and not to assume their needs. I was later able to complete my internship with Dr. Lidstone through Live Healthy Baldwin and the Center for Health and Social Issues where I was able to spend more time with the Harrisburg community and other community representatives and partners. 

Where was your favorite place on campus?  - When the weather is nice, and the pollen count is low I love sitting on front campus. I also love how quiet and modern Beeson is. 

What activities were you involved with? - I stayed busy during my time at Georgia College. I am a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. I am co-President of the Health Movement and a Peer Health educator. I am a member of the Black Student Alliance. I work as a Housing Host on campus and was a Community Advisor in Napier Hall for 2 years.  I studied abroad in Santiago, Chile in May of 2018 and in Honduras with the School of Nursing in October of 2019. I am a member of the Purple Cobras Intramural Soccer Team, even though I've only played one game in our 16 seasons, we do have a Championship under our belt. 

What was one of your favorite moments at Georgia College? - I would say my study abroad in Chile was one of my favorite moments. I loved living in Santiago and the group I traveled with absolutely made the trip. We had an amazing time getting to see different parts of the city each day and I made friendships that I know will last a lifetime. I'm so thankful all of the opportunities that Georgia College has afforded me in my 4 years here. 

What do you plan to do after completing this semester? - Unfortunately this semester was cut short due to COVID-19. But I am happy to announce that I have been accepted as a Finalist for the Fulbright Program. I was selected to complete a 10 month English Teaching Assistantship in Colombia starting in August.