Misericordia University Begins Music and Memory Program

Students at Misericordia University are bringing music to residents of a local nursing home through the nationwide Music and Memory Program. Students are collecting iPods to use to provide personalized music collections to patients that suffer from Alzheimer’s disease, dementia or cognitive challenges. The music awakens memories that had previously been thought lost. For many patients, listening to songs that they used to love immediately have a positive reaction.

The first patient the students worked with was Elizabeth Wallace, a woman suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Elizabeth had not spoken for over four years. After spending time listening to the iPod given to her by Misericordia students filled with her favorite songs, she began making eye contact, nodding her head and even responding “yep” to a question from her husband.

Upholding the dignity of every person is central to Misericordia’s Catholic identity, with programs like these that reflect that commitment at every stage of life. Read more on the Music and Memory Program at Misericordia University here.

Loyola University Chicago’s Vietnam Center Bridges the Gap

 

National Catholic Reporter recently featured an article on the Loyola University Chicago Vietnam Center, highlighting the Center’s work on healthcare in Ho Chi Minh City. The Center, directed by Fr. Julio Giulietti, SJ, works to advance “people-to-people exchange programs for Vietnamese doctors, surgeons, scientists and scholars to improve their educational and technical skills.” In Vietnam, Loyola faculty members can be found giving lectures and hands-on instruction to Vietnamese nursing and medical students.

One specific area of instruction in Vietnam is aimed at fostering a “patient-centered approach” in healthcare. The lack of adequate instruction for Vietnamese nursing and medical students often results in frustration, in addition to unreliable healthcare, which puts patients in further danger.

Additionally, the university offers a summer English Language Learning Program in Chicago for Vietnamese high school students looking to grow their skills in English and learn more about American culture. About the Learning Program, Fr. Giulietti says:

“We are well aware of the high failure rate among Vietnamese high school graduates who are not adequately prepared to live and study in America. We want to be part of the solution for this vexing problem.”

 

According to Fr. Giuletti, the Vietnam Center is the only Catholic, Jesuit and American institution that works openly in Vietnam.

Courageous Voices: Investing for the Long Term

Regis College has committed to help address the longstanding shortage of healthcare workers in Haiti through the Regis College Haiti Project. The Regis College School of Nursing, Science, and Health Professions has partnered with the Haitian Ministry of Health, private and public nursing school leaders in Haiti, and a Boston-based medical charity to launch an innovative, master’s degree education and leadership program for Haitian nursing faculty, most of whom have the equivalent of an associate degree. Upon graduation, the students will become nursing faculty who will then lead the institutionalization of the program in Haiti for future nurses.  The first cohort graduated in February 2014–watch the project video to learn more about the impact the program has had on them and to learn more about the project.

Over the next few weeks, we will release short stories about the courageous voices of our member colleges and universities.  Stay tuned to hear about how students, faculty, and staff are responding to Pope Francis’s call to social justice and a culture of encounter.  If you are still curious about how Catholic colleges and universities are promoting social justice on campus, read the original blog post on the Courageous Voices series, or check out ACCU’s inventory of promising practices, which includes many examples of our members engaging with Catholic Social Teaching.