The anticipation is already high: 25 students of the bachelor degree programme Gesundheits- und Krankenpflege at IMC Krems and several practice instructors from Austrian hospitals will go on an internship trip together with Markus Golla, the programme director. They will also be accompanied by Austrian sponsors who will visit their godchildren.
The roots of this project lie in 2001 when Dr. Emeka Emeakaroha carried out five health projects in Ihitte/Imo-State. These were the foundation for the construction of a hospital.
A unique aspect: current topics are addressed
This internship is unique, because the students work for one week together with the practice instructors from Austria in an African hospital.
A visit to the Nursing University in the capital is also on the agenda to network with local nursing students.
In addition, the students get to know the culture and local life. Within this framework, there will be daily new work assignments from the programme director on current daily topics such as "How can local health initiatives be improved?" or "What changes would improve local life?".
Inventiveness and decision making skills are encouraged
The challenge will be to work with little technical equipment. Improvisation and imagination are required and of course this also involves analysing and making decisions. All these skills should be advanced in the students through this internship.
„It is certainly rare for students to do an internship together in Africa. They will learn to operate with genuine basic skills in the healthcare sector. In contrast to Austria, they will not encounter any major technical infrastructure or back-up," explains IMC CEO Ulrike Prommer.
For most of the students, such a trip is a dream come true, which is why the waiting list is also long and a continuation of this format is planned for 2021. At this age, most of the students do not yet have the confidence to complete a complete work cycle of several months, for example with "Doctors without Borders". That is why a 14-day internship trip together in a group with fellow students is a very good format. After all, the Emeakaroha Foundation takes care of security and accommodation.
"It is not only nature and the environment that need global thinking patterns, but also nursing care. For this reason we have offered our students an internship trip to Africa as an international option. Think globally, act without borders. As programme director, it is important to me that students have this opportunity. This is the only way we can bring change and innovation into our system," emphasises programme director Markus Golla.
Regional Social Councillor Christiane Teschl-Hofmeister also expressed her enthusiasm: "I would like to thank all students for their commitment in the area of nursing and care. We know that the demand for nursing staff will rise sharply in the next few years, so I am all the more pleased when young people decide to take this direction professionally. Doing an internship on a continent like Africa as part of their training will broaden their personal horizons immensely and provide a valuable experience. "
About the degree programme
The bachelor degree programme Gesundheits- und Krankenpflege at IMC FH Krems is sponsored by the province of Lower Austria. Now, eight years after its introduction, a new future-oriented curriculum has been developed, which will be launched in the academic year 2020/21.
In addition to the classic modules of health and nursing care, students have the opportunity to expand their personal study path with additional elective modules from the 5th semester onwards. Here they can choose between nursing for children and adolescents, oncological nursing and nursing in the accident and neuro-rehabilitation field. And these electives are exactly the focal points that make this nursing curriculum so special.